Synopses & Reviews
This imaginative, funny counting book told in rhyme will delight young readers with its silly, offbeat storyline and amusing cast of characters.
"Farmer Sam owns 10 sheep. At bedtime, he needs to make sure they are all safe, but the counting of sheep works its famous magic: ' 'One... two... three... four...'/ That's as far as/ he got before he/ started to snore.' Sam's sleepiness does not amuse the ewes, who lean against a long pillow, to either side of the snoozing shepherd. ' 'He always does that!'/ 'It's not that hard to count sheep!'/ 'Is there something about us that puts him to sleep?' ' they ask one another. Meanwhile, in vertical panels along the page margins, a snickering wolf prepares to drop in. When the wolf knocks on the door, wearing a woolly costume, Sam rousts himself and assumes it's one of his herd. His desperate flock must find a way to keep him awake until he sees they're all accounted for, and a gatefold shows them staging a brisk one-to-10 performance. Kelly (I Hate Everyone) works from a sturdy premise, but her rhyme's meter often misses a beat. Ayto (The Witch's Children) nicely develops the suspense, cutting from the lethargic farmer to the anxious sheep to the grinning wolf. His visual sequences, goggle-eyed sheep caricatures and saturated watercolor palette of charcoal gray, turquoise and fuchsia on snowy white (even a Mondrian canvas on Sam's wall) strongly recall Satoshi Kitamura's graphics and humor. Despite some derivative elements and bumpy rhymes, this book generates excitement with the tried-and-true sheep vs. wolf formula. Ages 4-8. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"When a page folds out for the sheep's onstage debut, children will be ready to cheer (and count) these strange-looking but definitely lovable creatures." Booklist