So Sleepy Story.
By : Uri Shulevitz.
Publisher : Farrar, Straus and Giroux ( Aug.,2006)
" In a sleepy sleepy house/ everything is sleepy sleepy / Sleepy chairs / by sleepy table / sleepy pictures / sleepy walls " This is a book with a mantra that makes everyone fall asleep in an instant.
Uri Shulevitz, a Caldecott Medalist (born 1935), in this story has characterized all objects in a house in his attempt to make children fall asleep; everything from a sleeping little boy`s bed, chairs, plates,cups to wall pictures are drawn with faces. And they are all asleep at the beginning.
The water colour illustrations in dark shades of blue, brown and black, with creamy moon light softly touching the house making shadows on the walls, offers the tranquility and peacefulness of a late night
The simple rhyming verses compliment the illustrations well and carry this beautiful theme close to children. Uri, by his characterization of objects in the darkness of the night, sees the night through a child`s eye; when music drifts in with the breeze, it makes all objects in the house open their eyes and sway to the music. Then a plate falls, awakening the sleeping cat, and finally the Cuckoo-clock strikes, awakening the sleeping boy. In a while, everything stills as the music drifts away. "cat shut it`s eyes / and all is quiet again./ And sleepy boy falls back to sleep"
Uri Shulevitz`s wonderful lyrical illustrations tell us the story all by itself. The smooth conversion of the sleeping house into a lively ballroom hall is impressive. I could well remember myself as a child, sometimes awakening deep in the night,then trying to listen and hear through the stillness, to see through the darkness; and spotting shadowy shapes, moving and swaying in the darkness. Uri has so cleverly converted this into a beautiful bed-time tale.