Go To Sleep! by Marion Adams
|Go To Sleep! by Marion Adams|
|Category: For Sharing|
|Reviewer: Jill Murphy|
|Summary: Charming picture book about a young sheep who can't sleep. Beautifully illustrated with an evocative text, it has kind messages about scary night-times and will encourage children to practise their counting.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 32||Date: April 2017|
|Publisher: Full Media Ltd|
It was midnight on the wild moors. The round white moon peeped over the clouds. The barn owl flew from tree to tree without making a sound. The cool night breeze rustled through the gorse bushes.
Parents - isn't this just a lovely way to start a bedtime story? It's an oft-forgotten truth about picture books that they need to engage the parents as well as the children. How else can they read it aloud successfully? So I loved this opening paragraph of Go To Sleep! - it not only set the scene beautifully but it also made me want to rush off and find a child to read it to.
The story follows Tansy, a young sheep who can't get off to sleep. Her mum suggests happy thoughts and so Tansy tries to think about the things she loves - the sun, the rain, chasing her sister around the field. Nope. Still awake. Her sister suggests rhythmic breathing, tries it herself and drops straight back off to sleep. Tansy tries it too. Nope. Still awake. The barn owl suggests counting sheep. And so Tansy tries that...
... oh noes! There are twenty sheep in Tansy's flock and Tansy can only count nineteen of them. A sheep has gone missing! Has it been kidnapped? Stolen? Got lost? A panic ensues and a search party is formed. You might have guessed which sheep is missing from Tansy's night-time count but if you haven't, I'll let you read this charming picture book to find out.
The text is lovely - clear and accessible yet vivid and evocative. There's a rhythm about it that makes it a pleasure to read aloud and there are some interesting words to stretch the vocabulary of the little ones. And above all, it engages all five senses right from the very first page, as you can see from the opening paragraph. The lovely illustrations by Sarah-Leigh Wills have just enough brightness and colour for the night-time setting and clearly reflect the narrative. Tansy's expressions are adorable and I loved the panel showing the barn owl in flight in the night sky.
Go To Sleep! has some positive messages about night-time being much less scary than a sleepless child might think. It also gives some sensible ideas about how to fall asleep, which most children - and their parents! - will need at one time or another. And it will encourage children to practise counting. All these practical and good things are wound into a story with a good dollop of humour - snoring sheep, Tansy's obvious mistake - and a genuinely evocative sense of landscape and place.
You can read more about Marion Adams here
You can read more book reviews or buy Go To Sleep! by Marion Adams at Amazon.co.uk
You can read more book reviews or buy Go To Sleep! by Marion Adams at Amazon.com.
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