This beautifully illustrated book tells the story of a little puppy who depends strongly on his bedtime routine in order to have a restful, peaceful night's sleep (and about his friends who help him with it)! It is a great story for helping to keep a child's bedtime routine consistent. The lovely rhyme and rhythm make it engaging and enjoyable for both child and adult alike! The book is described as being for ages 0-4 and I can confirm that my 2-year-old and nearly 4-year-old both love this story! However, my 6-year-old also quite enjoys it so I wouldn't limit it to just the younger age group!
There are a few things I love about this book! I love that it includes Puppy praying before he goes to sleep which really reinforces the concept of ending the day in thanks to God. It includes a sweet bedtime prayer that would be easy for a child to follow and imitate for his or her own prayers. The authors do end the prayer with "Amen" in the story which is appropriate to teach children how to close a formal prayer but I find it awkward because it doesn't fit at all in the rhyming scheme of the poem format of the rest of the book. I also really love the adapted lyrics to "Rock-a-bye, Baby" (though in this case it's "Rock-a-bye, Puppy"). On finding a child loves the story, a parent or grandparent can easily adapt the lyrics to replace "puppy" with a child's own name). However, what I do find somewhat disturbing is that this song is sung by Puppy's friends, in spite of the fact that the lyrics of the second verse start include "Never mind, Puppy, Mother is near." The problem is, in the story, Mother is NOT near, nor is Father. In fact, there are no parents in the story at all. It indicates that Puppy is "too young to know how to read" which shows he's 4 or younger, but there's no parent around to guide him through his bedtime routine! Instead he's followed around his house by two young friends, whom he somehow doesn't notice until he remembers he needs a song, who look young enough that they should be in bed themselves, not helping him fall asleep and tucking him in! However, these concerns appear to be only parental concerns as my daughters didn't seem at all phased by this! I still feel that they're valid concerns.
In spite of that concern, I really enjoy reading this book to my children and they love to listen to it! Since it arrived a few days ago, they have asked to have it read to them multiple times a day! My 8-year-old is also quite able to read it to her younger sisters and the 6-year-old benefits from the reading practice, the rhyming helping her to decode words she may be unfamiliar with.
In general, I would recommend this book to parents of young children as a sweet addition to their bedtime routine!
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