cover image GOOD NIGHT, SLEEP TIGHT

GOOD NIGHT, SLEEP TIGHT

Claire Freedman, Author, Rory Tyger, Illustrator , illus. by Rory Tyger. Abrams $14.95 (32p) ISBN 978-0-8109-4513-5

Grandma Bear isn't having any luck coaxing her grandson into dreamland. Then she hits upon the idea of telling Archie all about his mommy when she was a cub. The older bear makes sure to include just enough titillating "naughty things" to show that Mommy wasn't always an upstanding citizen: two spot illustrations show the girl cub eating oatmeal from a bowl jauntily perched upside-down on her head, and bouncing on the bed while the feathers fly. Then, as Grandma reminisces about the bedtime techniques she used way back when (a special tuck-in, a forehead stroke, a kiss followed by "Good night, sleep tight"), Archie realizes that his mommy does the same thing with him today, and happily drifts off to sleep. Tyger (The Wide-Mouthed Frog ), the nom de plume of a three-artist team, works in subdued, downy watercolors that emphasize how Grandma's loving, ample girth envelops the plump little Archie like a comforter. Freeman's (Hushabye Lily ) language, with its familiar words and rhythms, resonates with security and affection. The word "sleepy" serves as a kind of refrain throughout the text, and although it's used to described what Archie is not, it functions as a subliminal (and effective) soporific. Ages 3-6. (Sept.)