Night Owl: Time to Sleep, Sheep the Sheep by Mo Willems
TIME TO SLEEP!Already togged out in her lavender nightie, with her blankie and pillow in hand, Cat the Cat calls out her five-minute warning to her friends. All are way ahead of her, however. Pig the Pig is scrubbing up in a sudsy bedtime bath, Giraffe has his toothbrush in hand, and Crab the Crab has already fetched his nighttime drink of water.
Then Cat the Cat walks into an embarrassing situation when she steps in to call time on Horse the Horse, seated on, er, the bathroom porcelain throne:
CAT THE CAT: "TIME TO SLEEP, HORSE!"
HORSE THE HORSE: "I'M ON IT!"
Flustered, Cat the Cat averts her gaze politely and moves on to Shark the Shark, who is way ahead of her, his plush bedtime pal Pigeon wryly in hand.
Then Cat moves on to her next announcee, Owl the Owl:
"TIME TO --!"
Hey, wait! Cat the Cat is temporarily speechless as she surveys Owl on his perch with eyes wide open. Obviously, she is off-base in calling sleepy time for Owl.
As the seven friends line up for the sleepover in their sleeping bags and bid each other a good night, Owl moves into line and--eyes wide--keeps watch over them all night long from his perch.
Mo Willems' latest, Time to Sleep, Sheep the Sheep! (Cat the Cat) (Balzer & Bray, 2010) continues this wonderful series of very early readers. In a total word count of only 51 words, including speech balloons, Willems manages some sly wit and a surprise ending, along with his elemental black-line and watercolor illustrations filled with personality, in a book just perfect for those emergent readers just beginning to decode the language.