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Llama Llama Red Pajama Hardcover – May 5, 2005
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From School Library Journal
PreSchool-K–With its sweet rendering of the trials of bedtime and separation anxiety, this book's familiar theme will be a hit with youngsters. Baby Llama, all tucked in and kissed after his bedtime story, watches his mama leave the room with a worried expression on his face. When he calls her and she does not come back immediately, he succumbs to a fit of wailing and weeping, finally bringing his panic-stricken mother at a full gallop. After her reassurance that "Mama Llama's always near, even if she's not right here," Baby Llama settles and drifts off to sleep. This story has a simple rhyme scheme, using natural language that children will enjoy. The large, boldly colored pictures have a grand and sweeping quality, extending out to the edges of the pages. Baby Llama's facial expressions capture his fear and alarm wonderfully. The contrast between light and dark enhances the drama in the story. This effective read-aloud will be a popular choice for storyhour and one-on-one sharing.–Corrina Austin, Locke's Public School, St. Thomas, Ontario, Canada
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
PreS. After Mama Llama reads Baby Llama a bedtime story and turns out the light, the llama drama begins. Feeling alone without his mama, Baby Llama wants a drink and calls down to Mama, who says she'll be up soon. But Baby Llama frets, whimpers, boo-hoos, pouts, and shouts. What if Mama is gone? At last, she appears (she was talking on the phone), and reassures her baby that she's "always near, / even if she's / not right here." Dewdney gives a wonderfully fresh twist to a familiar nighttime ritual with an adorable bug-eyed baby llama, staccato four-line rhymes, and page compositions that play up the drama. The simple rhymes call out for repeating, and the whimsical illustrations cleverly dramatize the increasing panic. Key worry words, such as fret, are highlighted, and for extra humor, Baby Llama's toy llama mimics his every expression. A real charmer that will leave preschoolers giggling and parents appreciating the familiar scenario. Julie Cummins
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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Baby starts feeling a bit apprehensive in the dark, and begins the usual childhood ploys for getting Mama back in the room... he needs a drink, calls out for her, but she's preoccupied with dishes and then a phone call. He begins wimpering, moaning, crying, hollering, stomping and pouting, jumping and shouting... wondering possibly "if Mama Llama's GONE?" Mama finally comes back in, a bit frustrated at first, then softening as she realizes he just needs a bit of reassurance... "Little Llama, don't you know, Mama Llama loves you so? Mama Llama's always near, even if she's not right here." After a double dose of kisses, he's then able to snuggle into his pillow and fall asleep.
Oh my goodness, did this book rattle my memory bank... though I can look back on it now and chuckle, I recall being five months into pregnancy with my second son, attempting to transition the first one (@ 2-1/2 years old) into a "big boy bed". The bottom of the baby bed had been lowered as far as it could be for quite a while, and we were nearing the time we'd have to raise it all the way back up! "Numero Uno", as I affectionately call him, was SO happy - we have a picture of him all tucked in on his first night, his trusty Glo Worm (a stuffed toy from the early '80s) at his side, great big grin on his face... until I walked out. Oh, the bedtime battle of wills between parent and child!
Sometimes all it takes is that extra bit of reassurance. That's how it was with my younger son, and with our oldest grandson. But as for my own oldest and our middle grandson (HIS son), all I could do - when "Numero Uno" told me about his struggles in trying to get his second son to stay in bed and go to sleep - was to give a wry smile and nod of recognition - and a big ol' wink! Cute book, fun to read, and certainly worth a try!