The Sandman

Overview

Where did that little piece of sand in the corner of your eye come from? That’s easy—the Sandman.

It all started a long time ago when a tiny man named Tor discovered that a dragon’s scale held magical powers. Ground dragon scales make magic sand that Tor sprinkles in the eyes of children to help them fall asleep. But how does he get the scales to make the special sand? He has to venture into the lair of a dragon, and that’s no easy feat!

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Overview

Where did that little piece of sand in the corner of your eye come from? That’s easy—the Sandman.

It all started a long time ago when a tiny man named Tor discovered that a dragon’s scale held magical powers. Ground dragon scales make magic sand that Tor sprinkles in the eyes of children to help them fall asleep. But how does he get the scales to make the special sand? He has to venture into the lair of a dragon, and that’s no easy feat!

This imaginative telling of the legend of the Sandman combined with fantastical, illuminating pictures will be enjoyed by the whole family.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"The old-fashioned look is refreshingly straightforward, free of irony and adult-oriented nostalgia."

School Library Journal

"[A] charming and comforting bedtime tale." — Booklist

School Library Journal

PreS-Gr 2- This fabulous story explains the origins of the Sandman. Tor is a tiny fellow who finds a dragon's scale. Taking it home to his workshop, he studies it and then starts to sharpen it. The dust that gathers makes him fall asleep. Once awake, it's a small leap for him to imagine how helpful this dust will be to all who suffer from sleeplessness, especially children. Fletcher's smoothly written story flows in a thoroughly plausible way and is beautifully served by Cowdrey's vibrant acrylic paintings. Especially intriguing are the wonderful little details, like Tor's mouse-drawn carriage made out of buttons. The old-fashioned look is refreshingly straightforward, free of irony and adult-oriented nostalgia. All in all, this is a compelling story with pictures that add drama, charm, and atmosphere.-Lauralyn Persson, Wilmette Public Library, IL

Kirkus Reviews
For those who wonder how sleep comes, here's the answer: It is due to the magical sand the tiny and daring Sandman, Tor, grinds from a dragon's scale and sprinkles over sleepless children each night. While the mythical beast sleeps, the little old man braves the fire-breathing dragon's lair, waiting for a chance to retrieve any scales that may pop off into the dust. Fletcher's fantasy narrative fleshes out the familiar trope by combining worlds of fairy-tale-forest settings with average household bedtime environments. Much like a Santa Claus figure, each evening Tor rides through children's bedroom windows on his miniature mouse-drawn button-wheeled cart to spread his sleep-inducing emerald sparkle-dust. Cowdrey's deeply colored acrylics of flora, fauna, one frightfully greenish and nostril-smoking dragon, workshop scenes and angelically dozing children alternate with black-and-white images of a cherubic dimple-chinned bald and white mustachioed tiny gentleman hard at work. Bedtime fodder for the slightly older, wide-eyed and wakeful preschooler. (Picture book. 4-6)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780805077261
  • Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)
  • Publication date: 5/27/2008
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 376,332
  • Age range: 3 - 6 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.76 (w) x 11.10 (h) x 0.37 (d)

Meet the Author

RALPH FLETCHER is the author of many books for young readers, from picture books to novels. He has also published books on how to write, and leads workshops on the subject. He lives with his family in Lee, New Hampshire.

RICHARD COWDREY has been a commercial illustrator for more than twenty years, and is the illustrator of the children’s books Frosty the Snowman and Bad Dog, Marley! He drew inspiration for The Sandman from a tattered copy of the Brothers Hildebrandt’s illustrated version of The Hobbit, which he came across many years ago. He lives in Gambier, Ohio.

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