- Age Range: 6 - 9 years
- Grade Level: 1 - 4
- Paperback: 32 pages
- Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (October 1, 1996)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0316105996
- ISBN-13: 978-0316105996
- Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 0.2 x 10 inches
- Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 76 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #845,188 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Goodnight Opus Paperback – October 1, 1996
This month's Book With Buzz: "Little Fires Everywhere" by Celeste Ng
From the bestselling author of Everything I Never Told You, a riveting novel that traces the intertwined fates of the picture - perfect Richardson family and the enigmatic mother and daughter who upend their lives. See more
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From Publishers Weekly
Through characteristically snappy wordplay, cartoonist Breathed ( The Last Basselope ) introduces a true "goodnight opus" that's both bedtime tale and vehicle for his own Opus the penguin. According to a self-consciously whimsical narrative--whose rhyme structure strongly resembles that of " 'Twas the Night Before Christmas"--Opus slips into "pink bunny jammies" and listens to his grandmother reciting his favorite story. However, when Grandma dozes off, a mischievous Opus admits, "I departed the text." Here, black-and-white illustrations give way to arresting technicolor a la The Wizard of Oz . Opus joins a mouse, a helium-balloon-headed pillow and a gargatuan purple critter on a flying tricycle to bid sweet dreams to the holsteins in the Milky Way (has someone been reading Gary Larson's Cows of Our Planet? ). Breathed demonstrates his airbrush mastery with stark color contrasts and luminescent spreads that fairly pop off the page. Nevertheless, he delivers his message--to "depart the text" of ordinary life for flights of fancy--in florid language that young readers may find opaque; beneath the window dressing, his clear attempt to woo the Dr. Seuss crowd seems soulless. All ages.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From School Library Journal
Grade 1 Up-This imaginative bedtime story pokes gentle fun at a childhood classic and encourages children to "depart the text" occasionally and search for new adventures. Opus the penguin is snuggled up in bed, wearing his bunny jammies and listening to the 210th reading of his favorite bedtime story when his sweet old grannie starts to snooze. With a friend or two in tow (one cleverly constructed from a pillow and a smiling balloon), Opus decides to head for the Milky Way. After several brief stops (one to take a dip in the reflecting pool with Abe Lincoln; another to commiserate with an overworked tooth fairy), the penguin and his pals arrive at their destination, where they feast on ice cream with a crowd of cheerful cows. Back home, Granny wakes up to discover Opus asleep on the kitchen floor with a pint of ice cream clutched in his hand. The comical illustrations allude to Margaret Wise Brown's Goodnight Moon, as does the bouncy, rhyming text. The art is similar to that in Breathed's cartoons, but has a broader, more Disney-film feel. Animals and people are not realistically portrayed, but are rounded, exaggerated caricatures. While there are occasional glimpses of Breathed's typical barbed wit, the general tone of the story is less sarcastic than that of his cartoon collections. This gentler tone, along with the popularity of the title he parodies, makes the book accessible to a wide age range. While the most likely audience consists of "Bloom County" and/or "Outland" fans, even libraries without his previous titles may want to consider this one.
Lisa Dennis, The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top customer reviews
I expect the older he gets as he learns to appreciate the humor, this is a book he'll treasure for years.
I was first introduced to this book by a long time friend who had it for his first son. I read the book to his son years ago when visiting, and my friend remembered that and got me a copy when my son was born. It's the kind of book that is that memorable and makes that kind of impression. We've now bought copies for other friends of ours with kids.
Any parent of young children will love this book as will the kids. Especially if you grew up reading "Bloom County", you'll recognize the one of a kind humor from Berkeley Breathed.
But Mr. Breathed knows about more than rhyming. He is still plugged into that part of his child brain that can imagine as big as all outdoors. He remembers when a blanket stretched across a couple of chairs could be a "fort", or when the best toy that could show up in a neighborhood was the big cardboard box that somebody's new fridge came in.
So Goodnight Opus combines those two elements - paying tribute to "Goodnight Moon" while not ridiculing it, but also inviting the reader to "leave the text" and let our imaginations run wild.
Sometimes the simplest and most gentle lessons are the best. If you've got a little one anywhere around you, ESPECIALLY if you've read them "Goodnight Moon" two hundred and ten times do both of you a favor and read them "Goodnight Opus" next.