Nasla’s Dream

Princeton Architectural. Sept. 2020. 32p. Tr ISBN 9781616899509.
K-Gr 2–Nasla is trying to sleep but is distracted by the yellow glow of an eye above her wardrobe. Who is looking at her? Her stuffed turtle or elephant, or any of the other toys her father neatly stacked on top of the wardrobe yesterday when Nasla told him she was too old for them? In addition to wondering about that eye, Nasla wants to sing, talk to her toys, and play with the Moon, but at night you do not do those things—you sleep. Nasla’s imagination takes flight—does the glowing dot threaten her? Luckily, Nasla has a secret charm, her old baby blanket, to ward off the unknowns of the night. She soon drifts off to dream of her old toys, as the cat jumps down from the wardrobe and blinks her yellow eye. Roumiguière’s text meanders, but always returns to the mysterious dot. Rea provides a fever dream of illustrations done in oil, with bold backgrounds on which a variety of two-dimensional images are a dreamy visual counterpoint to the text.
VERDICT This French import addresses the fears of the unknown in the night with a perfect resolution, plus a little whimsy thrown in for good measure. The gloom of night, impressively captured, make this ideal for one-on-one sharing.

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