cover image Good Night, Laila Tov

Good Night, Laila Tov

Laurel Snyder, illus. by Jui Ishida. Random, $17.99 (32p) ISBN 978-0-375-86868-9

On a camping vacation that takes two Jewish children and their parents from the beach, where “Tall grasses swayed. The salty air/ Was soft and still and everywhere,” to “a place so great and green,/ The deepest field we’ve ever seen,” the family savors the gifts of nature and the rewards of environmental stewardship. (Mom and Dad have even brought along some trees to plant.) And in return, the whole world offers a kind of thanks and blessing that becomes Snyder’s (Baxter, the Pig Who Wanted to Be Kosher) refrain: “And the sky sang... Good night, laila tov.” Ishida (Somewhere So Sleepy) portrays a world that’s all soft, lush colors and comfy, cushy contours. Her sunset scenes, which find the siblings sleeping while their parents set up camp, are perhaps a little too similar to those taking place in broad daylight (and some readers may wonder why the children spend so much of their vacation asleep). But the warmly lit spreads and loving, rosy-cheeked family are a nice match for Snyder’s simple, lulling verse. Ages 3–6. Agent: Tina Wexler, ICM. (Mar.)