Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Dinosaur Vs Bedtime - by Bob Shea

Ok, I know, I alluded that I would be reviewing some of the lesser known fictional picture book Cybils nominees, but I have to start with Dinosaur Vs. Bedtime because my toddler has adopted it as his own so I've had ample opportunities to examine this book (every morning before breakfast, every morning after breakfast, every morning before we put on our shoes . . . ) Besides, I'm shocked at how many of my friends have not already snapped up this title.

You may know Bob Shea from the beautifully designed picture book No Socks or the text he wrote for Big Plans, a little book that came out this year illustrated by some guy named Lane Smith (maybe you've heard of him?). Well, Bob is at his best with his latest title Dinosaur Vs. Bedtime.

At the beginning of the book, a little dinosaur boldly declares that nothing can stop him. Readers then follow him on some of his big matches: dinosaur vs. leaves, dinosaur vs. a big slide, dinosaur vs. a bowl of spaghetti. Little dinosaur conquers them all, that is, until dinosaur vs. bedtime.The illustrations are simple, beautiful, and guaranteed to entertain preschoolers. If you mixed Mo Willems' pigeon and Lauren Child's Charlie and Lola, you would end up with dinosaur. Dinosaur is a simple character with a black crayon-like outline much like Pigeon with elements of real photos and textures mixed in to add details of the fabric of his pajamas and spaghetti, mush like Lauren Child's illustrations. Shea seems to be a master of typography. There is so much emotion behind the way the text is laid out that it's hard to resist reading aloud and I daresay you'll be roaring right along with dinosaur.

Shea also has a great website that's not to be missed, especially because you can flip through most of the book there and experience it for yourself right now. And funny that I should compare him to Mo Willems, there is an audio clip there from Mo stating how much he hates the book and it's beautiful illustrations because he didn't think of it first.

But wait there's more! Noggin featured a video of Shea sharing Dinosaur vs. Bedtime so you can actually watch it right now!

Dinosaur vs. Bedtime from bob shea on Vimeo.

Another reason to check out Shea's site is the bio that made me laugh right out loud multiple times. How can resist a bio that begins like this?
"Here's a photo of a bear I fought this one time. I totally won. Yeah, I know, I'm pretty brave."

Oh, that Bob Shea, he's one funny awesome guy!


Franki said...

This book has been a HUGE hit with my students too! They LOVE it!

Beazer said...

I'm not sure if I should thank or curse you Steph! Both the kids LOVED ROAR! and New Socks on the internet. We have watched them more times than I care to count. I just picked both up from the library today to hopefully get them off their kick in front of the computer. Sheesh! It was a HUGE HIT!

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