No Nap! Yes Nap!

No Nap! Yes Nap! illus. by Dan Yaccarino. 32p. Little, Brown/LB Kids. Aug. 2014. Tr $17. ISBN 9780316248211. LC 2013024729.
PreS-Gr 1—Using few words but plenty of rhythm and repetition and even more action, this picture book launches into a quickly escalating showdown: "Mama says, Nap." "Baby says, NO NAP!" Mama and Baby zoom across the spreads, pausing periodically for traditional nap avoidance strategies like clapping, singing, and having a drink ("Now Baby nap?" "NO NAP! Drink! Drink! Drink! Baby big, long drink.") The retro style illustrations done in bold, flat colors using India ink on vellum and then colored and composed digitally are full of movement and energy. The chase takes the two through the house but eventually winds down in the room it all started in with everyone finally getting some much needed rest—including the startled pet fish. Encapsulating this familiar family argument, the endpapers explode with "Yes!" and "No!" This battle of wills is designed well to delight a range of ages from very young picture-book audiences to those beginning to read on their own.—Julie Roach, Cambridge Public Library, MA
A toddler gleefully fends off naptime by clapping, singing, etc. Just when it looks like sleep isn't in the cards, Mom pulls out her ace in the hole. The rhythmic text, with lots of "nos" and "yeses" ("Now Baby nap" / "NO NAP!") is kidlike without being cutesy. Yaccarino's unfussy geometric illustrations in subdued hues show a harried mom and an exuberant kid.
The book begins, on the title page, with a big toddler yawn. Must be naptime. But when Mama reaches out..."Baby says, NO NAP!" The child gleefully leads Mama around the house, fending off sleep by clapping, singing, slurping milk, and hiding, all the while responding to Mama's demands/pleas -- "Now Baby nap" -- with a sassy "NO NAP!" Just when it looks like sleep isn't in the cards for today, the mom pulls out her ace in the hole. After scooping up her rambunctious kid (from the laundry basket), she heads to a comfy chair, book in hand, for a little snuggle time: "Book. Look. / Now Baby nap. / Big, long nap. / On Mama's lap." It works, and she's even rewarded with some rest time of her own: "Now...Mama...nap. / Yes..." The rhythmic text, with lots of "nos" and "yeses," is kidlike without being too cutesy. It comprises baby-talk vocabulary and cadence, and reading it aloud, in a fair approximation of toddler-speak, should tickle the target audience. Yaccarino's unfussy geometric illustrations in subdued hues show a harried mom and an exuberant kid -- with matching wild, curly, red hair -- having fun together, even amidst the battle of wills, and then gradually winding down for a nap. The same thing will probably happen again come bedtime, so they'd both better rest up. elissa gershowitz

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