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Monday, July 11, 2011

Bedtime Hullabaloo! Written by David Conway and illustrated by Charles Fuge. Hodder, Hachette. 2011. $10.99 ages 3 and up

"The leopard and the giraffe then met a baboon who was reading a bedtime story to the moon when all of a sudden....

Can you hear the guffaws? And look at that face on the front cover! Tucked in sleepily with his own stuffed leopard, the 'ludicrous' leopard is rudely awakened by a loud, boisterous, and unfamiliar sound. It's loud enough to make him want to get to the bottom of it. Off he goes, and along the way, meets a 'dozy' giraffe who decides that the hullabaloo is worth investigating.

If you are a child who has had lots of books read, you are going to guess what comes next. Other jungle animals are only too happy to tag along and see what the ruckus is. They are bleary-eyed and a bit ornery:

"So on they all walked into the night, all sleepy
and tired and very uptight. Through the long
giggling grass, past the tickling tree,
and when at last they came to a stop what on
earth did they see?"

There are a lot of animals they didn't see, and a big surprise when they discovered what was making all that noise! Something needed to be done! The results are agreeable to all...until they find themselves awakened once more from peaceful slumber. A perfect ending!

The language is luscious, the text is bright and enriching. It is such a fun book to read aloud; it may even do damage to your vocal chords. The illustrations are realistic, with a humorous twist. There is much to notice as the pages are turned, including a baboon reading 'Goodnight Moon'... to the moon, of course. The animals share their feelings with endearing expression. This is a book that offers its readers much in terms of strategies for writing....onomatopoeia, alliteration, repetition, rhythmic prose and a boatload of fun!

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