cover image Good Night, Dinosaurs

Good Night, Dinosaurs

Judy Sierra. Clarion Books, $15 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-395-65016-5

With a twist on an old lullaby theme, Sierra and Chess offer a fanciful look at what happens when ""the sun [sinks] low / in the Mesozoic sky"" and it [is] ""bedtime- / bedtime for dinosaurs."" In this droll menagerie, two tiny stegosauruses whisper ""creepy stories"" to a group of enormous, ""trembling allosauruses."" Winged pteranodons dressed in frilly polka-dotted nightgowns suck on their baby bottles while hanging ""forty feet above the ground, / Softly swaying to the sound / Of the dinosaurs' sleepytime song."" Whether they are ""snoring all in choruses"" or resisting bath time in a ""squishy fishy tub,"" these irresistible reptiles (and their parents) have many of the same problems with bedtime that children do. Unfortunately, even if one already knows how to pronounce multisyllabic dinosaur names, Sierra's meter stumbles and lurches enough to make reading aloud difficult. Nonetheless, the idea of worried and well-meaning dinosaurs rocking their progeny to sleep in the ""Home Sweet Swamp,"" coupled with Chess's eccentric and endearing creatures, will tickle the funny fossil bones of parents and children alike. Ages 3-6. (Feb.)