cover image Sleepless Knight

Sleepless Knight

James Sturm, Andrew Arnold, and Alexis Frederick-Frost. First Second, $14.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-59643-651-0

The creators of the Adventures in Cartooning books look to a younger audience with this first title in a picture-book series. Their romp stars the exuberantly self-centered knight and her long-suffering horse, Edward, and it’s bursting with exclamation points, silly jokes, and slapstick humor. The knight is planning a camping trip, as knights do, and she loads up her trusty steed with the essentials: her rock collection, her scooter, and her teddy bear, packing everything into a massive gray sack on Edward’s back. Despite his heavy load, she’s the one who collapses with fatigue within sight of the castle walls. “That’s it for today, Edward, I can’t go any farther. Let’s make camp here!” she exclaims, taking out the marshmallows. “I only brought 30 bags. I hope that’s enough.” After she discovers that her teddy is missing, sleep is out of the question for everyone until he’s found. The story bubbles with an inexhaustible energy, never snarky or overreaching, while the endpapers and their directions for drawing the story’s characters invite readers to create episodes of their own. Ages 3–5. (Apr.)