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Barbara McGee
Willowdale (Ont.), Annick Press, 1991. 24pp, cloth, ISBN 1-55037-160-6 (paper) $4.95, ISBN 1-55037-157-6 (cloth), $12.95
Distributed by Firefly Books. CIP

Pre-school to Grade I/Ages 2 to 6

Reviewed by Marion Scott.

Volume 20 Number 2
1992 March

This is a rather bland bedtime picture-book. The plot is slight: Edward counts sheep to fall asleep, only to be joined by an imaginary (?) flock, which takes him on a nocturnal romp in the park. The romp is a childlike and low-key one, consisting of hide and seek and riding bikes rather than magical events. Eventually, a sleepy Edward and sleepy sheep return home to bed.

The illustrations arc soft in both colour and line, and nighttime blues and greens predominate. They do not, however, extend the story significantly or give it any real depth. The sheep are cloudlike in shape and mildly humor­ous - notably the rear views. But the depiction of Edward is puzzling. He sleeps in a real bed, looks at counting books, and rides a tricycle, so it would seem his intended age is at least three, more likely four. However, he looks like a one-year-old and this is discon­certing.

Two- to six-year-olds would no doubt get some enjoyment from the story and pictures - although it is dubious that all would grasp the concept of counting sheep. Still, this is very much a supplementary purchase for schools, libraries and day cares. If considering purchasing, I would opt for the paperback.

Marion Scott, Toronto Public Library, Toronto, Ont.
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