This Book Will Get You to Sleep!
Jory John, illus. by Olivier Tallec. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, $18.99 (32p) ISBN 978-0-374-31130-8
John targets the wide-awake with this comically riotous story that loudly promises to leave readers “sleeping PEACEFULLY” by its conclusion. Directing via megaphone, an orange kangaroo in blue cowboy boots asks what would tire readers, then attempts to induce zzzs by engaging with possible answers to that question: a parade of monster trucks, a stadium of animals chanting “FALL ASLEEP!” When these efforts flop, the ’roo recommends other unlikely approaches, including counting sheep... and the fire-breathing dragons chasing them. “ARE YOU COUNTING THEM??? WHY ISN’T THIS WORKING?!?!?!” laments the perplexed narrator. The marsupial eventually relents (“So... what would help you fall asleep, then? Less yelling?”), reluctantly pulling a bed out of its remarkable pouch. Tallec’s humorous, signature-styled pictures easily keep pace with the book’s mock-serious tone, foregrounding a charismatic protagonist who will help kids find their way, if not to sleep, then at least to plentiful giggles. Ages 4–8. (Apr.)
Reviewed on: 03/03/2022