Bedtime For Buzzy

Let's see what all the buzz is about...           

*I'm surprised there aren't more books out there encouraging kids to go to sleep in such a fun and productive manner -- author TJ Hackworth should be commended for the idea and the execution
*Dovetailing off of the last point, the degree of difficulty in concluding a story like this is extremely high, but Hackworth stuck the landing perfectly
*All of illustrator Sean Baptist's work was great, but the way he spanned the Courageous Explorer bridge across two pages was especially magnificent  

*Right off the bat, there is some potential for real reader confusion due to the boy being named Buzzy and the first image being of a Buzz Lightyear style toy
*While I appreciate the extra bit of meat and length that four scenarios provided, I couldn't help but wonder if the rule of threes exists for a reason 
*Toward the end, there is a page where all of the other toys are laid out on the rug but Moon Man appears to be strangely absent

This was an extremely difficult book for me to rate.  On the one hand, B4B does so many things right that it feels like a shame for me to give it anything but a Buy.  Yet, the things I remembered most about it between the time we first read it and now are negative; admittedly minor, but, nonetheless, significant.  That Buzz/Buzzy thing just oozes copyright weirdness to me, even though it's unintentional.  And since it sits on page one, it hits me like a ton of bricks each and every time.  My second con is more mood-dependent; but I'd be lying if I said I didn't think about it with each passing reading.  Finally, there's an added wrinkle for us old-time movie buffs: namely that the title has me picturing Ronald Reagan and a monkey fitting into the plot somehow.  Again, not copyright infringement, but Buzzy and Bonzo are way too close for my brain (what with all the B's and Z's) not to get knocked off track.  Factoring all of these things together, I ended up knocking it down a peg despite the many strong attributes B4B brings to the table.                             

Buy / BORROW / Donate / Destroy

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