________________ CM . . . . Volume XI Number 16 . . . . April 15, 2005

cover

The Book of ZZZs.

Arlene Alda.
Toronto, ON: Tundra Books, 2002.
24 pp., pbk., $19.99.
ISBN 0-88776-699-4.

Subject Heading:
Sleep-Juvenile literature-Pictorial works.

Preschool-kindergarten / Ages 2-5.

Review by Reesa Cohen.

*** /4

excerpt:

All creatures sleep.
Some stand up...
Others s-t-r-e-t-c-h out.
Some doze in arms, in hands
on chairs, or rocks.

A first glance at this concept book invites readers to explore sleep in a very simplistic way, as seen through the lens of a camera. The text is minimal, the photos sharply focused in crisp colour and centered on the white frame of each page. But it is on further scrutiny that the excellent photographs from this accomplished photographer and author of several other books for the early years set really hit home as being fresh and enticing.

internal art

     Alda connects the animal world and the human world as she has done in many of her other titles such as Sheep, Sheep, Sheep, Help Make Me Fall Asleep and Pig, Horse, Cow, Don't Make Me Now. It is a gift to make the ordinary so interesting. Perhaps it is because of the intimacy and clarity of the close-up views, whether it be a flamingo, a goat, a puppy interspersed with young human subjects from a variety of ethnic groups. All these subjects are captured in different poses of sleep, covering how, when, and where one sleeps.

     This could work well as a comforting and gentle bedtime read-aloud, coaxing little ones to sleep.

Recommended.

Reesa Cohen is an Instructor of Children's Literature and Information Literacy at the Faculty of Education, University of Manitoba in Winnipeg, MB.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

Copyright the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.
Published by
The Manitoba Library Association
ISSN 1201-9364
Hosted by the University of Manitoba.

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