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*Starred Review* K-Gr. 3. "Is there a pea under your bed. / Then what's your excuse. / Go to bed." Reading at bedtime to his kid, who refuses to fall asleep, a desperate dad shortens the old stories, twists the nursery rhymes, and adds his own messages (" Why are you still awake.") in hilarious, short, fractured fairy tales and verse. On each spacious double-page spread, Blitt's cartoon-style, line-and-watercolour pictures are both beautiful and funny, whether depicting the mayhem of the "Two Little Pigs" or the cosy view of Dad surrounded by books, desperate to get his sweet kid to sleep so that "everyone could live happily ever after." As the parent gets more exhausted, the stories get shorter, angrier, and wilder (when all those kids in the shoe won't go to bed, the old lady sells them to the zoo). The triumph of the child who refuses to bow to authority will appeal to preschoolers, and so will the loving bedtime scenes. Older elementary-school children who know the stories and can appreciate the parody will probably like this, too. Hazel Rochman
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"Better than Children's Benadryl when it's cocktail hour and the kid won't go to sleep." -- Daniel Handler (a.k.a. Lemony Snicket) "Smart and funny and beautiful and pithy. I really love it and I'm very jealous." -- Maira Kalman

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