cover image Benito's Dream Bottle Benito's Dream Bottle

Benito's Dream Bottle Benito's Dream Bottle

Naomi Shihab Nye. Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing, $15 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-02-768467-4

When his grandmother confides that she hasn't dreamed in a long time, a concerned Benito proceeds to ask ""everyone he knew"" where dreams come from. The responses are varied and fanciful, but Benito has his own solution: ""dreams really came from the Dream Bottle,"" which is located between the chest and the stomach and pours dreams into the head when a person lies down. Determined to fill up his grandmother's bottle, Benito helps her think hard about ``stoplights blinking and trees shivering in the wind and telephone answering machines full of voices....'' Nye (Sitti's Secrets) then presents a tiresome mishmash of dialogue and snippets from Benito's own dreams and those of family members, including-eventually-his grandmother, who ``dreamed she had a little grandson who took her by the hand and led her outside. He showed her how to cook leaves inside a broken toaster oven....'' More noteworthy are newcomer Yu Cha Pak's strategically patterned, vividly hued watercolors, which creatively interpret the story's plot as well as the dream sequences. Ages 4-8. (Apr.)