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  • Switching On The Moon A first book of bedtime poems
  • 3-8
  • Brian Karas
  • Walker
  • 10/1/2010
  • 978-1406306668
  • $12.99

Switching On The Moon A first book of bedtime poems

This follow up to Here's A Little Poem is now published by Walker and Candlewick {USA} with fantastic reviews including starred reviews in Publishers Weekly and The School Library Journal. It has been shortlisted for the CYBILS 2010 Award. Edited by Andrew and Jane Yolen and illustrated with the delightful pictures of Brian Karas. A lovely selection that follows young children through getting ready for bed, bathtime, lullabies, dreams and outside in the night. There are new poems by writers such as John Agard and favourites from Roger McGough and other poets from both the UK and the USA.

Here is a starred review from Publisher's Weekly.
"Following up on Here’s a Little Poem, Yolen and Peters’s 60- poem anthology reveals the many faces of nighttime through the words of these collaborators as well as poets that include Tennyson, Plath, Lee Bennett Hopkins, and Mary Ann Hoberman. Some verses are comical (Colin West’s “Going to Bed”: “Go to bed early—/ Your hair grows curly./ Go to bed late—/ Your hair grows straight”), some are gentle (Polly Peters’s “Puff”:  All is safe. Now drift away/ On velvet dreams, from night to day”),  and others are full of whimsy. With Karas’s mixed-media illustrations creating a chalky, dreamlike atmosphere, this book is made for bedtime. Up to age 5."
Publishers' Weekly

"From the traditional “Man in the Moon” and Vachel Lindsay’s “The Moon’s the North Wind’s Cooky (What the Little Girl Said)” to Roger McGough’s “First Rub of Dawn,” this properly soporific companion to Here’s a Little Poem: A Very First Book of Poetry (2007, illustrated by Polly Dunbar) pairs 60 short, murmurous, night-themed poems or extracted verses to full-bleed, usually full-spread paintings awash in soft moonlight and gentle, dreamlike images. Printed in generously spaced lines of good-sized type well suited to reading in low light, the selections are artfully arranged in a thematic progression that moves from moonrise to bedtime rituals (“My name is Captain Soapsuds— / A mighty ship I sail….”), on to a set of lullabies and then through the wee hours to dawn. There is a lullaby with a Caribbean inflection (“Rack-a-bye, Baby”) and one from the Iroquois, and a Scottish quatrain appears against Langston Hughes’s “The Dream Keeper.” To suit these and others, Karas provides a gently multicultural cast of characters. Best of all, the poetry’s mild, steady rhythms will close little eyelids anywhere."
Kirkus Reviews

"Just right for reading aloud with preschoolers, the 60 poems in this lively anthology play with magical images of the night sky as well as with rituals of bath and bed. Arthur Guitermans Starlighter includes luminous images of nature and mystery: When the bats on the wing and the birds in the tree / Comes the old Starlighter, whom none may see. Then there is Judith Nicholls Bathtime! (Ive rubbed, Ive scrubbed). Karas generously sized illustrations in gouache, acrylic, and pencil, many in subdued shades of brown and blue, show a child admiring the moon from many places: a city street, a window, and the side of a pond. Then he marches up the stairs (naming each step as he goes), splashes in the bathtub, and brushes his teeth with the whole family together (Scrub them, rub them). Along with the gentle, familiar scenes, many kids will relate to the rebellious voice in Jo Ellen Bogarts poem: I am dirty today. Ill get dirty again / So why bother to wash in between? A fun companion to Mother Goose."
Booklist

"Sixty well-chosen poems conjure up the perfect atmosphere for dreaming. Sometimes playful and sometimes thought-provoking, the poetry is divided into three categories to carry readers through the bedtime hours: “Going to Sleep,” “Sweet Dreams,” and “In the Night.” Karas’s cartoon illustrations, done in gouache, acrylic, and pencil, beautifully complement each poem while also creating an aura of nighttime magic that unifies the volume. The poets included range from Langston Hughes, Sylvia Plath, and Eleanor Farjeon to Karla Kuskin, Douglas Florian, and Tony Mitton. There are many moments to enjoy and to treasure within these pages, and this anthology would have a valuable place in most poetry collections."
School Library Journal Starred Review

"The moon, dreams, lullabies, bathtime, toothbrushes — these things all make appearances in Switching on the Moon: A Very First Book of Bedtime Poems. Compilers Jane Yolen and Andrew Fusek Peters do a fine job of varying the subjects and moods in this cozy themed anthology that includes poets both well known and up-and-coming. G. Brian Karas’s paintings, many featuring a gorgeous midnight blue, are peopled with cloud-sleepers, bed-bouncers, dream-wonderers, and night-singers, a safe world with an edge of mystery."
Horn Books

“The man in the moon, the moon in all its phases, stars, bats on the wing, owls in the wood, teddy bears and beds, “big or small/ or lumpy or bumpy,” populate the poems in this collection, an extended lullaby that will be to infants and toddlers as lettuce was to the Flopsy Bunnies. Sleep-inducing, in the best possible way, are Brian Karas's luscious paintings, with bouffant moons and sparkling starlight in inky velvet skies. The three sections of the book, Going to Bed, Sweet Dreams and In the Night, cover all the bedtime and sleep-time bases – even tooth brushing and the tooth fairy – and include poems by Anonymous, from Mother Goose and the likes of Tennyson, Pauline Johnson and Sylvia Plath. Langston Hughes's The Dream Keeper could be sung to one's own music: “Bring me all of your dreams,/ You dreamers,/ Bring me all of your/ Heart melodies/ That I might wrap them/ In a blue cloud-cloth/ Away from the too-rough fingers/ Of the world.”
Best Of The Current Crop, The Globe And Mail {Canada}