THE TOWN AROUND THE BEND: Bedtime Stories and Songs by Bill Harley

Bill Harley, Author . Round River Music $15 (800-682-9522) ISBN 1-878126-46-6

Harley (Down in the Backpack ) brings his trademark humor and warm, happy-go-lucky folk music sound to a new collection of six stories and four songs designed for bedtime listening. "A Warning About Jumping on Beds" advises listeners to get cozy and to not bounce around—and also warns anyone who may be listening in a car or elsewhere to be extra careful, lest they fall asleep. From there, Harley takes off on a typical easygoing storytelling session set in the Town Around the Bend (an idyllic, quirky place akin to Lake Wobegon or Sandburg's Village of Liver and Onions, according to the liner notes). His description of how the Town Around the Bend got its name—changed from such monikers as Pickleopolis, Greenbeanburg and Sausage City—is sure to have kids chuckling. Similarly, tales about Town residents not having bellybuttons or why some pillows sing and others don't are sure to get laughs. But Harley stays on theme, not letting his humor get too raucous and providing appropriately soothing song selections. Ages 3-up. (Oct.)

Reviewed on: 11/10/2003
Release date: 00/00/0000
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