Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Bedtime Perfect Time for a Story

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Bedtime Perfect Time for a Story

Article excerpt

Byline: Brandy Hilboldt Allport, Times-Union staff writer

So many factors make a book worth recommending -- good writing, good illustrations, good message, plain old good fun. In today's featured selection, author Sam McBratney's insightful comments in the forward caught my attention. McBratney has written more than 70 books for children and is best-known for Guess How Much I Love You?, the story of Little Nutbrown Hare and Big Nutbrown Hare and the deep affection they share.

After reading McBratney's musings, it is obvious why he is such a beloved author. Here is what he writes:

"But why tell stories at bedtime? I've often wondered about that, too, because after all, a good story is an anytime story. Maybe it's simply that bedtime is best for the people involved, the tellers and the listeners. No one is going anywhere, there is time -- the telling of a story and the hearing of it can happen without glances at the clock.

Reading to children, reading with them at the quiet end of the day, just feels to me like one of the most natural and worthwhile things you can do. And the benefits may last -- who knows? -- for all of a lifetime."

-- Title: In the Light of the Moon & Other Bedtime Stories -- Author and illustrator: Sam McBratney/Kady MacDonald Denton -- Publisher: Kingfisher -- Price: $18.95 -- Ages: 4 to 8

Youngsters can't help but have sweet dreams after they listen to one of these eight simple stories.

In Brotherly Love, a farmer bear harvests three sacks of food for winter, one more than he needs. He decides to give the extra food to his brother, who lives across the valley. The morning after the delivery, the bear notices he still has three sacks. He travels across the valley again to share with his brother, and still, the next morning three sacks remain.

Are the bags of food magic? He heads for his brother's house again, as he wonders. When the bear reaches the bridge, he sees someone coming, someone carrying a sack of food. It is his brother.

There are only a few paragraphs remaining in the story, but it is a great time to pause and get children involved by asking them to explain the ending. …

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