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Good night, sweet butterflies : a color dreamland

by Dawn Bentley; Heather Cahoon; Melanie Gerth

  Print book : Fiction : Primary school  |  1st ed

Good Night, Sweet Butterflies   (2008-09-04)

Very Good

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by AnnaLovesBooks

ISBN 0689856849 – Whether or not you enjoy this book will probably depend on what it is you expect from it.  It is easy to become confused by the cover statement "From the creator of Ten Little Ladybugs" (ISBN 1581170912).  The creator/author of that book is Melanie Gerth, and she is also the creator of Good Night, Sweet Butterflies - but she is not the author here.  The text in this case is by Dawn Bentley, illustrations by Heather Cahoon.  That information, intentionally or not, is hidden away on the back cover in small letters.  Ladybugs fans might find themselves disappointed.

Nine glittery plastic butterflies head off to find a place to sleep.  One by one, they choose a place, until there are none left.  It is time to sleep until another day arrives.

While technically a Board Book, the pages here are much thinner than the usual board book binding.  That and the small, not too hard to remove butterflies (a potential choking hazard) make the book unsuitable for children under 3.  There are cut-outs on the cover for all nine butterflies and each succeeding page has one less cut-out, which is a nice way to learn to count down from 9.  The places the butterflies choose to sleep are color-based (the blue butterfly chooses a blue stream, the red on red roses, etc), so colors are introduced as well.  The negative comes in two parts, both in the writing.  The text is in rhyme, but the rhyming pattern is clunky, with long lines and no evident cadence to it.  In addition, some lines are tongue twisters ("with a pink piglet and three playful pink possums"), which only makes reading the rhyme more difficult.  If your child is likely to spend a lot of time on the counting, you'll take so long between pages that the rhyme issues won't matter anyway, but it's an annoyance that what is essentially a poem doesn't flow the way you expect it to.  Really a nice book and a super cute idea, Butterflies is just missing something in the text.

- AnnaLovesBooks

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