Written by Edith Hope Fine
Illustrated by Christopher
I love this book. I love any book that will get my toddler grandson to start yawning and rubbing his eyes. The sounds of "sh" and the two sounds of "s" are my best friends forever. So is the word "yawn." In one 4-line stanza alone there are two "sh" sounds, six "s" sounds, and two "s" sounds that sound like "z." The word "yawn" is my other best friend forever. It's totally in this book. And--you guessed it--I'm yawning right now.
Illustrations are peaceful sunset, dusk, and night images. From sky, nature, farm, town to home and bed, the greens, blues, golds, and moon-white colors are calming, soothing, and perfect for the text.
GOOD NIGHT, GOOD NIGHT, CONSTRUCTION SITE
Written by Sherri Duskey Rinker
Illustrated by Tom Lichtenheld
The title of this book forced me pick it up, take it to the cashier, and hand over my Visa card. Truth!The rhythmic and rhyming text helps toddlers settle down. The illustrations move from sunset to dusk to dark using soothing colors.
I have one issue with the book--as I do with many cartoons, children's movies, ad infinitum, ad nauseam. All of the vehicles are male. Girls like construction sites and vehicles, too. I was always charmed by cement mixers as a little girl. It's an open-up-your-mind vehicle that moves in a straight line on wheels that are rolling in circles, with a gigantic barrel full of wet cement turning and turning at right angles to the direction the wheels turn. Now that's physics for a little girl or boy. In short, female trucks would be out-of-this-word awesome.
DON'T LET THE PIGEON STAY UP LATE
Written and Illustrated by Mo Willems
Muted, calming colors and text that is playful, funny, and charming. Willems' pigeon books are a blast. By the end of the book, I've read the word "yawn" so many times that reading is a challenge. I'm yawning on each page. So is the kid.
GOOD NIGHT MOON
Written by Margaret Wise Brown Illustrated by Clement Hurd
Of course! Of course! Of course! I was 18 months old when this classic was published. We're in our late sixties and both of us are doing well.
WARNING: For Adults Only
GO THE F**K TO SLEEP
Prayers are answered. Kid's asleep. You're weary and half bald from pulling out your hair. This is a go-to-sleep book that understands you, forgives the unholy language that hovered in the background of your read-out-loud voice, and gives you a free membership card in the billion-strong club called "Time to Put the Toddler to Bed." What can you do but laugh about the genius-level machinations of a don't-want-to-go-to-bed toddler.
Holiday book or baby shower idea:Everywhere Babies by Susan Meyers. Illustrations are by Marla Frazier.
No preaching. No moralizing. Simply the acceptance through words and illustrations that each one of us is normal and that all kinds of family relationships are normal. Children can find themselves in the book. That makes it SOME BOOK.
Everywhere Babies is recommended for 6 months to 3 years. I'd recommend it for newborns to 3 years. Babies need to hear written language from the very beginning. The text is spare and rhythmic, and it's fun to read.