Cleverly constructed, this is a tale of two sleepy animals, a tiger cub and a little crocodile, both in need of a comforting goodnight kiss.
Each of them approaches various other animals asking for the kiss that will send them off into slumberland and both receive somewhat silly excuses as to why they won’t fulfil the request. The monkeys for instance, tell the little tiger that they are already asleep whereas a pair of toucans respond thus to little crocodile, ‘We only kiss each other. We hope you understand.’ The smoochy birds then proceed to use their beaks and wing tips to form a heart shape.
Both little tiger and little crocodile talk tearfully to the full moon, telling the smiling object, ‘I shall never get to sleep. I shall always be awake.’ The moon is empathetic telling them another creature is coming; but rather than being encouraged, they each see a menacing-looking shadow coming towards them. All ends happily however, with a snuggly surprise final twist.
A sweet, heartwarming pre-bedtime tale that offers lots of potential discussion points. Polly Dunbar’s illustrations are playful and wonderfully expressive and her colour palette is soft as befits the moonlit evening. I can see this becoming a favourite with young humans to be shared with hugs and kisses. It would also work well as a solo or supported read for slightly older children.