Light Up the Night

Jean Reidy, illus. by Margaret Chodos-Irvine. Disney-Hyperion, $16.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-4231-2024-7
A boy celebrates his place in the world in Reidy’s (Too Pickley!) soothing bedtime story. Removing the red-and-white quilt from his bed, the narrator fashions it into an open-cockpit jet and blasts into outer space: “These are my galaxy stars so bright—/ they light up the heavens late at night/ in my own little piece of the universe.” The cumulative verse follows the boy’s journey as he eventually zeroes in on Earth, where, after he pays tribute to his continent, country, town, and street, he returns to his house, bedroom, and cozy bed. Caldecott Honor artist Chodos-Irvine’s (Ella Sarah Gets Dressed) brightly colored matte prints portray the universe as a welcoming place, abuzz with activity, with swirling, starlit skies and friendly constellations, astronauts, and aliens. Acting as a confident tour guide, the boy remains literally in the driver’s seat, as his quilt-patterned vehicle transforms into a spaceship, prop plane, train, truck, and skateboard before reverting to its original form. The collaborators are entirely in sync as they remind readers that the universe and its wonders are theirs to revel in. Ages 4–8. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 09/19/2011
Release date: 10/01/2011
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