Sleep Like a Tiger

Mary Logue, illus. by Pamela Zagarenski. Houghton Mifflin, $16.99 (40p) ISBN 978-0-547-64102-7
“I’m not tired,” says a small girl in a red dress and a crown. “I’m just not sleepy.” Her affectionate parents—who also wear crowns—aren’t fazed. “They nodded their heads and said she didn’t have to go to sleep. But she had to put her pajamas on.” The three talk about the different ways animals sleep, taking their cue from family pets and the girl’s stuffed animals. Zagarenski’s gently surreal jewel-box paintings chart the movement of the girl’s imagination as she considers bears (“mighty sleepers,” her parents call them), snails (“They curl up like a cinnamon roll”), and tigers. “When he’s not hunting, he finds some shade, closes his eyes, and sleeps. That way he stays strong,” she says. It’s this image that holds the greatest promise of safety for the girl; as she drifts off, she imagines herself curled in the curve of the tiger’s tail, embracing a stuffed tiger as she sleeps. Zagarenski’s paintings take Logue’s story to places marvelously distant in thought and time; each spread holds treasures to find even after several readings. Ages 4–8. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 10/01/2012
Release date: 10/23/2012
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