Will the titular princess ever get to sleep?
In this purposive adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Princess and the Pea,” the normally good royal sleeper, portrayed as a blue hippo, suddenly cannot fall asleep. Readers have seen that her younger brother (also a blue hippo) accidentally caused a pea to become lodged between her many mattresses. The princess usually assists the royal gardener (a white rabbit), bakes with the royal chef (a green gator), listens to the royal librarian (a brown bear) read, and stargazes with the royal astronomer, a snazzily dressed sloth. But after a couple “tossy-turny” nights, she is exhausted. Luckily, her friends have good advice. The gardener teaches the lizard pose, the chef demonstrates breathing, the librarian shows her how to rest her legs on the wall, and the astronomer talks about putting “each of [her] worries on a star, until with every sparkle, they disappear.” When the princess tries these meditation and yoga techniques, she finally falls asleep. Droll, colorful cartoon illustrations feature the animal characters in distinctive attire, with the sloth astronomer looking especially dapper. The sleep techniques are designed to work best at bedtime, and further information is provided in an author’s note. Unfortunately, as a story, its purpose overwhelms its narrative impact, though kids will enjoy the illustrations. (This book was reviewed digitally with 11-by-18-inch double-page spreads viewed at 25.3% of actual size.)
Probably best suited to families that already incorporate yoga and meditation into bedtime routines.(Picture book. 4-6)