sleep like a tiger

Sleep Like a Tiger by Mary Logue, illustrated by Pamela Zagarenski

This is the story of a little girl who just wasn’t sleepy at bedtime.  Her parents agreed that she didn’t have to head right to bed, but she did have to put on her pajamas.  Then she had to wash her face, and that felt good.  She climbed into bed, because she loved the feeling of the sheets.  Then she asked about whether everything in the world sleeps.  Her parents explain that yes, like the dog being asleep on the couch where he shouldn’t be.  The book turns to explain about different animals and how they sleep from the upside down bats to floating whales to hibernating bears.  After talking, her parents let her stay awake in her bed.  The little girl begins to sleep like each of the animals, curling up like the dog, folding her arms like bat wings, finding the warmest spot like a cat.  Until finally, she is asleep like the strong tiger.

Oh what a bedtime story!  I had heard great things about this book and at first saw beautiful illustrations and a fairly normal story, but that changes and becomes something very special.  Once the little girl is in bed and talking about the animals, the language becomes more poetic and filled with imagery.  It is warm, cozy and infinitely inviting.

Zagarenski’s illustrations have a richness about them that enhances this bedtime tale.  Thanks to the golden crowns, they have an illuminated manuscript feel.  There is plenty of texture and pattern, but also a modern zing to the illustrations.  They are entirely winning.

This glorious bedtime story is a real treat to read aloud.  Get your own jammies on and cuddle up, I promise you will be dozing in no time, just like a tiger.  Appropriate for ages 3-5.

Reviewed from library copy.