Jul 26, 2011

The World Champion of Staying Awake

The World Champion of Staying Awake

The World Champion of Staying Awake by Sean Taylor
Illustrated by Jimmy Liao

     It's little Stella's time to go to sleep, but her three stuffed animals are wide awake.  There's Cherry Pig, Thunderbolt the mouse, and Beanbag Frog and they all want to be the World Champion of Staying Awake.  Stella's rich imagination helps her tire them out one by one. She first makes them ride on her pillow and imagine they are sailing on a boat:

The pillow ship rocks
the pillow ship sways
the pillow ship sails 
across the waves

     The adventure on the boat is just what Cherry Pig needed to get tired and fall asleep. One down, two to go.  Next, Stella puts mouse and frog inside a shoe box and imagines they are on a train:

And as it chugs
and clatters and steams,
the train will carry you 
into your dreams...

     Thunderbolt Mouse is now exhausted and becomes the "world champion...of going to sleep."  And now that leaves Beanbag Frog. So Stella puts him on a basket and imagines he's flying on a hot air balloon:
The starship balloon
flies off and away
leaving behind 
the last of today

    Beanbag Frog is finally out. "Not a croak. Not a bounce. Not a hoppety-hop."  Stella carries them all to her bed, tucks them in, and might have become the world champion of staying awake...but she falls asleep as soon as her head touches her pillow.
     The World Champion of Staying Awake is a sweet bedtime story that combines prose and poetry.  The illustrations are beautiful and the main character, Stella, is creative and charming.  Wonderful book to include amongst bedtime favorites.

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