Art, poetry, and peekaboo are a winning combination in this bedtime board-book diversion.
Authors Appel and Guglielmo present six great works of art accompanied by rhymed text that sounds like Goodnight Moon outtakes, organized around themes of nighttime and sleep. The titular Starry Night in question, for example, is Vincent van Gogh’s famous explosion of luminescent yellows against a field of swirling blues and black: “Goodnight glowing moon up high… / Goodnight stars. Goodnight sky.” Subsequent rhymes and artwork are presented in four-page increments—one line of verse against a constellation-filled background facing a solid field of color with a die-cut hole and an inviting “Peek-a-boo, baby,” for example, or “Peek-a-boo, moon!” Turning the page reveals the second half of the rhyme on verso and, on recto, the full painting previewed in the peekaboo frame a page earlier. Other featured works are Berthe Morisot’s The Cradle, Henri Rousseau’s The Sleeping Gypsy, Franz Marc’s The White Cat, Diego Rivera’s Delfina and Dimas, and van Gogh’s The Bedroom. The peekaboo pages break the flow of the rhyme scheme a bit, and one could argue the relative merits of less peekaboo and more artwork, but children will no doubt enjoy the game of preview-and-reveal. Less sophisticated and ambitious than Shana Gozansky’s My Art Book of Sleep (2019) but well worthwhile.
Because putting a toddler to bed isn’t just an art—it’s fine art.(Board book. 2-4)