cover image SnoozeFest


Samantha Berger, illus. by Kristyna Litten. Dial, $16.99 (40p) ISBN 978-0-8037-4046-4

Think of Lollapalooza’s polar opposite and you get SnoozeFest. Held in the igloolike NuzzleDome, it attracts “All the best sleepers in Snoozeville,” including the nominal protagonist, a sloth named Snuggleford Cuddlebun. “Wildcats and wombats and koala bears./ And brown bats and squirrels and giant armadillos” all show up with “their wumphiest, coziest, comfiest things” to bed down en masse before heading home and dreaming of next year. Although the story’s charms are diminished by Berger’s (Crankenstein) overly twee rhymes (“She’s tired and groggy and logy and lazy,/ She’s drooly and foggy, and dusty and hazy”), this knowing, affectionate spoof of music festivals is fresh and timely (bands like “Chamomile Rage” play soporific sets, sleep masks are sold as souvenirs, and a concession stand serves milk and honey). Litten (This Day in June) offers an impressive range of cute, sleep-loving characters, and she’s equally good at conveying the festival’s exceedingly mellow vibes, especially when the lights go down, lanterns glow, and the crowd just can’t restrain itsdrowsiness. Ages 3–5. Author’s agent: Brenda Bowen, Sanford J. Greenburger Associates. Illustrator’s agent: Alan Lynch, Arena Illustration. (Jan.)