All children need eight to 12 hours of sleep each night says the pediatrician. Seriously, there is no off switch on kids, so who is he kidding? Yes, you surmised correctly; we have sleeping issues! Maybe some children just need less sleep. I wish some parents did! So I imagine the author is one of us sleep-deprived parents who conjured up this storybook. You can almost hear it in his stories…okay, you can hear it in his stories!
This book called ”Once Upon a Time, The End (Asleep in 60 Seconds)” is about a little child who would not go to sleep and his father reading stories trying to get the child to go to sleep. Every night the child asked for more stories to be read, so the father took out his scissors and shortened the stories! I really expected the stories to be lots shorter from the title! These typical bedtime stories are shortened from book length to one page though! And all end with the character falling asleep or a directive to the kids hearing the story to go to bed!
The middle of the book shows what has happened….all of the characters have come out of those stories and are playing with the child! So what does the father do now? He chops the stories up some more and starts anew with different fresh stories cut up even shorter! (Not the same stories as he already read.) Now the stories are even shorter at only a few lines rather than a full page of text. The end picture shows the father and child both asleep, snoring peacefully!
All of the old familiar stories are here, told in a new and different way (shortened condensed versions). The titles have also been shortened in some cases: Chicken Little, The Two Little Pigs, Small Girl, Red Hood, Goldilocks and the Bears, Princess Pea, The Little Red Hen, David and Goliath, Sleeping Beauty, Jack, Hickory Dickory Dock, John Jacob, The Old Lady’s Shoe, Hey Diddle Diddle, Riddle One, and Riddle Two.
There is one story in ”Once Upon a Time, The End (Asleep in 60 Seconds)” that might disturb children: the Old Lady in the Shoe sold her kids to the zoo because they would not sleep! The other stories are similar enough to be recognized as the same ones, but have much less text! I loved the father and son pictures, but the fairytale character pictures seemed more abstract to me and I did not like them as much. They are all in color and most of the characters end up in bed at the end of the story. There are details in the pictures that pertain to sleeping that children will love to find like the zzz’s in the alphabet soup!
The text can be hard to read, especially for children. Some of it is in cursive writing. The parts where the father is talking about his child not going to sleep yet while the fairy tales are not in cursive. My daughter and I both enjoyed this fun book, but it was not a good bedtime story as she kept saying, ”I am not asleep yet!” This 28-page book has four to 20 lines of text on each page. Recommended for ages 5 and up.
More from this contributor:
Crocodile Tries to Eat Girl in ‘I’d Really like to Eat a Child’ by Sylviane Donnio