Time for bed, Fred! by Yasmein Ismail
Bloomsbury, 2013. ISBN 9781408837016.
(Age: 4+) Warmly recommended. Picture book. Bedtime. Fred will do anything to avoid going to bed. He can be found hiding in a tree or the long grass. He even takes to hiding in a water can. But when he tries to hide in a dirty puddle, then he must come inside and be washed and dried. Even then, he runs outside and hides. Once he is brought back, tired, then he wants a story to be read to him, and succeeds in trying out all the other beds in the house before finally settling on his own where he dreams of the story he has heard.
A funny and involving look at bedtime and what it means for animals and by comparison, children, this will create lots of laughter in the home and classroom, as children recognise all the attempts they make in avoiding bed. But realising that bed is inevitable, bring along a book, just like Fred, to be read to them as a prelude to actually going to bed.
The infectious illustrations, rendered in washes of water colour, will evoke laughter from those reading the book, or having the book read to them. The impressions of Fred with a few seemingly simple daubs of black and grey is just wonderful, and I loved particularly the illustrations of him hiding in the flower garden and rushing down the stairs, two of the many endearing and evocative drawings.