Night Thunder and the Queen of the Wild Horses

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Set ``up and over the clouds'' where ``the night was not very dark, and not wet, not at all,'' this entertaining pourquoi tale explains the why of thunder-at least for this particular storm. After painting a rainbow-winged ``Queen of Wild Horses,'' a very sleepy girl retires to bed only to be awakened by loud noises that also ``wake'' the Queen. Together, they fly beyond the clouds and encounter thrashing dinosaurs, jumping elephants, bumping elks, bouncing bears, slapping beavers and-the root of the problem-one thumping rabbit; all of whom are very sleepy, but are kept up by one another's noises. In a story that begs to be read aloud, Reiser (Bedtime Cat) uses repetition to lull listeners with a rhythm of words and sounds (``yes I will stop thumping. YES. I will stop thumping. Then yes, I will stop thumping right now''). The illustrations are equally as soothing, with cool evening hues and translucent animals that lend a dreamy air to this surrealistic adventure. Ages 4-up. (Sept.)
Children's Literature - Mary Sue Preissner
As this bedtime tale unfolds, the little girl and the queen of the wild horses cannot go to sleep because there is just too much noise. Venturing out into the night, in this cumulative tale, they find dinosaurs, elephants, and a host of other animals also awake from the noise that the other animals have been making. They finally find rabbit thumping his foot, trying to stay awake, because he knows all the other animals are awake and he doesn't want to miss anything that might happen if he did go to sleep. The animals are all convinced, finally, that they should all quit making noise and go to sleep. When reading this tale, be sure to include the sound words that appear in a variety of type styles that are different from the majority of the text. A note from the author on the back jacket indicates that this book can be paired with her Bedtime Cat story.
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2One rainy night a little girl and the Queen of the Wild Horses (a figure she has drawn) are awakened by loud sounds. When they fly above the thunderclouds they discover dinosaurs, elephants, elk, and the like all crashing and banging about because still other animals (and their noises) are keeping them up. The final disturber of the peace turns out to be a small rabbit who has been thumping in order to stay awake with all the other creatures. When finally persuaded to sleep (on the condition that everyone else does too), the night is at last quiet, and the little girl and her companion can return to their beds. Several issues of concern to young children are addressed in this story: the creation of an imaginary (and powerful) friend to overcome loneliness, the mystery of thunder, the cranky noisiness of overtired creatures, the determination to stay awake with everyone else, the cooperation necessary to achieve harmony, and the calm that comes after a storm. Text and illustrations both reflect the progress of the storm, from letters and animals that crash through the pages to the lulling words and sleeping animal-shaped clouds that the little girls flies through on her way home. A lilting alternative to other explanations of thunder, and a creative look at finding power within oneself to impose order on an unruly world.Meg Stackpole, Rye Free Reading Room, NY
Kay Weisman
A young girl is awakened one night by loud banging and clanging. Mounting the Queen of the Wild Horses, a figure in a painting she has created, she sets off to find the source of all the clamor. They tour the sky, discovering a crowd of dinosaurs, a herd of elephants, a gang of elk, a sloth of bears, a bunch of beavers, and one thumping bunny--each group creating a ruckus because it has been awakened by another group. With the Queen of the Wild Horses acting as negotiator, everyone finally agrees to quiet down, enabling the young girl and her trusty mare to get some sleep as well. The watercolor-and-pen illustrations add a certain whimsy to the fanciful tale, and although the cacophony of the text seems at odds with a calming bedtime read, this will appeal to young listeners.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780688117924
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 9/1/1995
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 4 years
  • Product dimensions: 8.56 (w) x 11.29 (h) x 0.41 (d)

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