Bye-bye, Crib

( 1 )


There it is.
Over there.
The big bed...
Am I ready?

#1 New York Times best-selling author Alison McGhee tells the tale of a child's first rite of passage - from the crib to the big bed. Ross MacDonald's glowing illustrations will comfort, amuse, and inspire toddlers and even their parents as they take this...

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There it is.
Over there.
The big bed...
Am I ready?

#1 New York Times best-selling author Alison McGhee tells the tale of a child's first rite of passage - from the crib to the big bed. Ross MacDonald's glowing illustrations will comfort, amuse, and inspire toddlers and even their parents as they take this first big step together.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

With some reluctance, a blond, blue-eyed boy graduates from his small but secure crib. McGhee (A Very Brave Witch) catches every fluctuation of the child narrator's voice as he wavers between confidence and hesitation. "I'm a big boy now. You know what that means," the boy announces, turning away from a proffered bottle and diaper. His stuffed animal, Baby Kitty, mirrors his no-thanks gesture, and the two flex their muscles to prove they're tough. On the other hand, the hero reflects, "Not every big boy wants to sleep in a big bed." Nearby, the bed's eye-like pillows glare, and its blanket drapes in a menacing frown. The boy and Baby Kitty take matters in hand, tossing familiar objects onto the mattress ("How is it over there, Big Pillow?") before making the leap. This sympathetic text has a big potential for preciousness, but MacDonald (Another Perfect Day) tamps it down with witty allusions to retro comics. Artful voice bubbles guide readers across the pages, while MacDonald's golds, chocolates and saturated blues suggest lithographed Sunday funnies. MacDonald's nostalgic imagery emphasizes the childhood rite of passage, demonstrating that a small move can be an act of bravado. Ages 2-6. (Mar.)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Children's Literature - Christina M. Desai
This story follows the process of a small boy in transition from crib to bed. Illustrated in MacDonald's retro style, it evokes classics of a bygone era when children were expected to be less sophisticated and children's books focused on commonplaces of their everyday lives. Young children will identify with this boy's fears, and like him, they will easily see the huge bed as a drooling monster, its pillows as glaring eyes, as the illustrator suggests. The palette is predominantly blue and yellow, the colors of night and day, fear and happiness. The bed at first looms large, in stark contrast to the tiny crib, till gradually the boy overcomes his fears and the bed takes on more normal proportions. Parents play a supporting but minimal role. They are represented sometimes merely by an outstretched hand offering a bottle or diaper, or by minimal dialogue balloons spoken by entities off stage. This treatment of parents emphasizes the loneliness of fear and dilemma; parents are brought back into the picture only after the transition to bed is complete. The boy's decision to take this step toward maturity also shows the allure of the adult world, with its greater degree of independence. This simply told, simply illustrated story will resonate with the very young in many ways. Reviewer: Christina M. Desai
School Library Journal

PreS-K- McGhee, a pro at addressing the qualms that often accompany important transitional events in children's lives, has done it again. This time, the hurdle is a little guy's move to his "big boy" bed. After his initial refusal to venture into what he sees as an enormous, child-eating monster, where he might get lost in the sheets, suffer frostbite, or never be heard from again, the child relents, first tossing his Red Blankie (might that someday be a cape?) and Big Pillow ahead as scouts. Seeing that they seem no worse for wear, he works up his courage (and his muscles), holds tight to his faithful stuffed sidekick, Baby Kitty, and takes the plunge himself. MacDonald's evocative art, so like his work in Another Perfect Day (Millbrook, 2002), employs the comic-book conventions, visual wit, and pulp-art palette fans know and love, and the animation in both the text and the pictures turns what might have been a ho-hum tale of trepidation into a proactive adventure with a winsome wee hero. A winner.-Kathy Krasniewicz, Perrot Library, Old Greenwich, CT

Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Baby Kitty, Red Blankie, Big Pillow and their owner, a big boy of a narrator, are reluctantly making the transition from a crib to a big-boy bed. While admittedly a big boy (no bottles, no diapers and lots of muscles), the narrator goes through his own list of reasons why "Not every big boy wants to sleep in a big bed." These reasons range from thinking the new bed is a monster in disguise, to fearing getting lost in the sheets or not having any and getting frostbite. Mom and Dad respond simply to these worries, until the little lad realizes that the time has come. One by one he tosses his beloved friends over to the big bed, telling them to be brave and asking each in turn how it is over there. Finally, Baby Kitty says he is ready, and since they go everywhere together, they make the leap hand-in-paw. MacDonald's retro-style illustrations and colors are a breath of fresh air among all the cutesy characters that abound today. This style also perfectly meshes with the text-the superhero-like narrator directly addresses readers, while Mom and Dad speak in comic bubbles. Toddlers and parents will see bits of themselves in this delightful look at an early rite of passage. (Picture book. 2-6)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781416916215
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books
  • Publication date: 3/4/2008
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 903,792
  • Age range: 2 - 6 Years
  • Product dimensions: 10.00 (w) x 10.00 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Alison McGhee is the New York Times bestselling author of Someday, as well as Little Boy, So Many Days, Bye-Bye Crib, Always, A Very Brave Witch, and Bink and Gollie. Her other children’s books include All Rivers Flow to the Sea, Countdown to Kindergarten, and Snap. Alison is also the Pulitzer Prize–nominated novelist of the adult novel Shadowbaby, which was also a Today show book club selection. She lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and you can visit her at

Ross MacDonald's illustrations have appeared in many magazines, including the New Yorker, Vanity Fair, Newsweek, and Time. He is also the author and illustrator of several children's books, including Another Perfect Day, which was a Publishers Weekly Best Book; Achoo! Bang! Crash! The Noisy Alphabet, which was a Publishers Weekly Best Book and a Nick Jr. Magazine Best Book; and, most recently, Bad Baby. Mr. MacDonald lives with his family in Connecticut. Visit his website at

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 16, 2008

    Story Is Boring

    Bye-bye, Crib is a book about a little boy transitioning from his crib to a big boy bed. I am very surprised that Simon & Schuster would allow this book to be published considering there is 'no conflict' or a climax to the book. Publishing company's are always looking for this in children's picture books. The illustrations are not up to date images that your child could relate to--they seem as if they were created from the early 1930's. Readers, with parents and children in mind should allow the reader to be able to relate to the story, not think it pre-dates them. My child & I were very disappointed in this book.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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