From School Library Journal
PreSchool-Grade 2. As she did in The Bear under the Stairs (Dial, 1993), Cooper takes a gentle, wry look at a child's imagination. At bedtime, a young boy takes a fantasy trip in his little red car into a land filled with his stuffed animals and toys?all of which are larger than life. In the well-patterned, repetitive text, the child asks each toy to play with him; each replies in its own way that it's not the right time for playing: "Nighttime is for resting, not racing," says the train. As the sun goes down, the youngster journeys through puffy clouds, past bedlike mounds, and under a moon hung by a string, and finally stands "awake and alone, with the sleeping world around him." But not to worry, for here comes his mother to scoop him up, carry him through a land of oversized bathroom fixtures and a giant tube of toothpaste, and put him in his warm, cozy bed. With their careful, creative details (the zipper in a toy tiger's stomach, wooden soldiers parading with toothbrushes, the toy train's cars filled with sleepy nursery-rhyme characters), the dusky golden and purple watercolors complement and enhance the text. Like Denys Cazet's I'm Not Sleepy (Orchard, 1992) and Martin Waddell's Can't You Sleep Little Bear? (Candlewick, 1992), this charming story will soon become a favorite part of the bedtime ritual.?Jane Marino, Scarsdale Public Library, NY
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Ages 3^-6. A boy (who appears to be about two years old) announces to his mother that he is going to stay up all night. He then revs up his red toy car and drives away so fast his mother can't catch him. He soon meets up with a tiger, but the beast is too sleepy to play, as are the others he encounters--soldiers, who march with toothbrushes over their shoulders; animal musicians; and even the moon. At last the boy is so tired he is grateful when his mother scoops him up and puts him to bed. The "real" story emerges in Cooper's ingenious watercolors: a little boy stays up late playing in his room, his surroundings bathed in the golden glow of lamplight. The tiger, looking very tigerish, is poised atop a bureau, and the moon hangs from a mobile's string. The imaginary blends seamlessly with the real, and although children will probably take everything at face value at first, repeated reading will lead them to the wonderful discovery that the boy is really safe in his cozy home with his mom waiting patiently nearby. Susan Dove Lempke