The cumulative story is appropriately lulling…[with] a clever twist at the end…
With a perfectly crafted text and stunning paintings, Audrey and Don Wood reveal once again why they are picture book creators of the highest order. The Full Moon at the Napping House, the highly anticipated follow-up to their beloved classic The Napping House, is the ideal book to share at bedtime or anytime.
The Napping House is anything but in this companion to the Woods’ evergreen 1984 picture book. Nearly all of the familiar players return—the granny, curly-haired boy, fuzzy dog, and tawny cat—but under the diaphanous light of an enormous moon, “everyone is restless.” Audrey Wood again uses a cumulative structure, but while a tiny flea started a chain reaction that awakened everyone in The Napping House, this time a cricket has the opposite effect as it chirps “A full-moon song/ that soothes the mouse,/ who calms the cat,/ who gentles the dog,/ who snuggles the boy,/ who hugs the granny,/ in the dreamy bed,/ in the full-moon house,/ where no one now is restless.” The pale white glow of the moon gives Don Wood’s scenes a jittery midnight energy as the boy plays catch with the dog and the beleaguered granny tries to get comfortable. Concluding in a state of cozy restfulness, the Woods’ story serves as a pleasing inversion of the previous book and works even better as a bedtime read. Ages 4–8. Agent: Rosalie Grace Heacock Thompson, Heacock Literary Agency. (Sept.)
"A wonderful storytime addition, particularly where The Napping House is popular."—School Library Journal "Concluding in a state of cozy restfulness, the Woods' story serves as a pleasing inversion of the previous book and works even better as a bedtime read."—Publishers Weekly "Softly rendered, luminous art illustrates and expands the lilting text, incorporating varying perspectives and eyecatching, whimsical details."—Booklist (online)
PreS-Gr 1—Readers who have long embraced the silly serenity of The Napping House (HMH, 2009) will love the raucous mood of The Full Moon at the Napping House—where no one in the house is sleeping. One night the full moon pours its light into a restless house; Granny is wide awake, the child is fidgety, the dog is playful, and there's a prowling cat and a worried mouse. Eventually, a chirping cricket comes to the rescue with his soothing song that kicks off the needed calm that helps the inhabitants finally get some rest. Like the original story, this cumulative tale is told through lyrical language and rich vocabulary. The final watercolor illustrations shows a full moon overlooking a peaceful household. VERDICT A wonderful storytime addition, particularly where The Napping House is popular.—Gwen Collier, Buffalo and Erie County Public Library, NY
Thirty-one years after a wakeful flea roused the heaped-up sleepers in The Napping House, a full moon finds the household struggling to get back to sleep. "There is a house, / a full-moon house, / where everyone is restless," from "sleepless granny" to "fidgety child" to "playful dog" to "prowling cat" to "worried mouse." Don Wood's acrylics re-create the familiar bedroom with a deep blue, nighttime palette. Though the house's denizens are restless, its furniture oozes sleepiness, the comfortably rounded bedsteads and chair back slumping forward slightly in sympathy with the granny, who is clearly desperate to get some shut-eye. In this visit to the familiar house, a "chirping cricket" finally settles everyone down with a "full-moon song" until "no one now is restless." Audrey Wood's cumulative story takes the same pattern as in the previous book, a mirroring that its fans will instantly recognize but that works against this follow-up's concept. The sonorous lines are almost identical to those that describe the sleepers in the first book, but they do not conjure restlessness; moreover, as the cricket's song works its magic and sends the characters to sleep, the page turns speed up instead of slowing down for a far-from-sleepy effect. Don Wood wisely eschews the temptation to replicate the first book's humorously indelible image of sleeper piled upon sleeper, instead varying composition and perspective slightly with each double-page spread to create a gentle turbulence that slows down gradually as the characters calm. Fans will doubtless be happy to revisit old friends, but they will probably still reach for the original more than this once the novelty wears off. (Picture book. 4-8)