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Go to Sleep, Groundhog

Go to Sleep, Groundhog

by Judy Cox, Paul Meisel (Illustrator)

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publishers Weekly
A restless groundhog toys with the idea of timing in this perky look at the February 2 tradition (and also offers a wink at those who like to postpone bedtime). Cox's (Cool Cat, School Cat) critter has trouble following the protocol. Instead of slipping into his usual long slumber, Groundhog feels restless and gets up several times-at "half-past" October, November and December-and observes, for the very first time, all the other holiday celebrations that typically take place while he hibernates. Following each outing, he's coaxed back to bed by well-meaning friends. Kids will enjoy being in on the joke here, as they recognize symbols of Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas on the appropriate spreads. Meisel (Zara's Hats) seems to revel in decorating his crisp acrylics with all the trimmings for the various fetes. Thanks to a simple, repetitive story structure and a cheery design that includes brisk autumn tones and some small panels, trick-or-treaters, turkeys and Santa Claus all seem right at home in the same story. Does this groundhog see his shadow? Only readers know. An author's note provides further details about Groundhog Day. Ages 4-8. (Feb.) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature
In a fresh and fanciful picture book, Groundhog gets ready for a long sleep because his clock reads half-past October. But he can't get to sleep so he goes above ground with a mouse companion. There they see the makings of Halloween and a friendly witch flies him back to his burrow, reads him a story, gives him a drink of apple cider and tucks him in. He awakes two other times, once at Thanksgiving when a friendly turkey flies him home, and at Christmas when Santa gives him a sleigh ride home. When he finally wakes up on February 2, he sees his shadow and realizes he needs a little more sleep. Children will delight in the patterned review of the holidays that precede Groundhog Day, and in spotting the mouse who doesn't go on the adventures but waits at the burrow. The hand-lettered look of the text, Groundhog's household furnishings of birch bark, and Meisel's friendly, textured gouache-and-acrylic paintings give this book visual appeal. And the note at the end explaining Groundhog Day customs gives details on other beliefs about predicting the end of winter weather. In fact, Groundhog puts himself to sleep, when the clock reads a little past February, by reading a book called "Your Garden." Good fun and a good holiday book for one about which few books exist. 2003, Holiday House, Ages 4 to 7.
— Susan Hepler, Ph.D.
Library Journal - Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2-At last, Groundhog Day finally has an irresistible story to call its own. Groundhog goes to sleep on Columbus Day as usual, setting his alarm clock for February 2, but he keeps tossing and turning. He checks the clock and gets up at half-past October, half-past November, and then half-past December. Each time, he sees the trappings of holidays that he had always slept through before. Halloween Witch, Turkey, and Santa each take a turn tucking him back into bed, reading him a seasonal story, and giving him a holiday treat. Naturally, when February 2 rolls around, Groundhog is finally sound asleep, but he wakes up long enough to go up to the surface and see his shadow. An afterword describes the development of the Groundhog Day superstition. The text flows smoothly, and Cox makes effective use of repetition. Meisel's vibrant acrylic-and-gouache illustrations will help make this a favorite in storytimes.-Kathleen Kelly MacMillan, Maryland School for the Deaf, Columbia Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Groundhog doesn't know what he's been missing when he hibernates, but a case of insomnia gives him the opportunity in this toasty story of autumn and winter festivities. Secure in the umbers and ochers of his burrow, Groundhog crawls under his quilt to catch a few months of shuteye. He tosses and turns for a couple of weeks before deciding to jump his sleep engine with a short walk. It's Halloween, a whole new experience for him to marvel at, until a kindly witch whisks him home and tucks him in. A month later, after more tossing and turning, he's back outside, and it's Thanksgiving-where a turkey does the honors; then it's Christmas and Santa. Fortunately, he sees his shadow on Groundhog Day and can catch up on his sleep. The pleasing mood and gentle pacing makes Cox's tale ideal for bedtime, and Meisel's artwork is dreamily transporting. If young readers are sharing Groundhog's insomnia, a thorough note on the origins of Groundhog Day will give them something to chew on at book's end. (Picture book. 3-7)

Product Details

Holiday House, Inc.
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
8.82(w) x 11.26(h) x 0.34(d)
Age Range:
5 - 8 Years

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