cover image Hibernation Station

Hibernation Station

Michelle Meadows, illus. by Kurt Cyrus, Simon & Schuster, $16.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-4169-3788-3

In Meadows’s (Pilot Pups) imaginative spin on hibernation, a menagerie prepares for winter as golden leaves give way to snowfall. A bear wearing a conductor’s cap and train-themed pajamas hands out pillows to animals as they climb aboard a train fashioned from hollowed logs. “Groundhogs, turtles, snakes, and frogs./ Slipping into holes and logs./ Fluff the pillows, snuggle in./ But then... commotion in a den!/ ‘I cannot sleep!’ a black bear roars./ ‘My roommate rolls around and snores!’ ” Chipmunks spill a drink and a frog is afraid to be alone—but all finally fall asleep as the ursine crew soon gets everyone in order. Creatively balancing the real and the fanciful, Cyrus’s (Pest Fest) digitally colored art is completely enchanting. Reminiscent of some of Jan Brett’s creations, the animals are rendered at close range and in meticulous detail; their festive pajamas add a whimsical flourish (snakes and slugs in pjs—who can resist?). The overall coziness should get readers in the mood for some overnight hibernation of their own. Ages 3–7. (Aug.)