cover image Too Tired

Too Tired

Ann Turnbull. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt P, $13.95 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-15-200549-8

This fanciful picture-book account of Noah and the Flood features two sloths who are just too tired to board the ark with everyone else. As a young-looking Noah fastidiously organizes the animals according to his list, he notices that the sloths are missing. No amount of cajoling or coaxing from the other passengers can get the sloths to budge. Everyone is in a tizzy, except for the cocksure cats who remark, ``Who cares? Let them drown.'' Democracy and kindess rule, however, and the sloths are saved just as the water reaches a dangerous level. Turnbull's short sentences keep the story at a suspenseful pace while her humorous undertones and callous feline characters prevent the proceedings from becoming too scary. Clark's lush jungle and sea scenes showcase an impressive array of species trudging, swimming and winging their way to safety. Her wide-eyed menagerie displays an air of frenzy and concern most welcome in this tale. While not exactly a reverent introduction to the Bible, this funny story clearly extols the virtues of patience and caring for others. Ages 4-8. (Apr.)