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Bats at the Beach
A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this book.
What parents need to know
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What's the story?
On a night when \"the rising moon can grow no fatter,\" bats head out to the beach carrying toys, picnic baskets, and blankets. Through rhyming couplets, the book follows the bats as they put on moon-tan lotion, bury each other in the sand, make new friends, surf, sail, play in the waves, go to the snack bar, and sing around a bonfire. Then they head home before the sun rises.
Is it any good?
Children of all ages will be delighted with this simple and joyous concept: Bats have a perfect night at the beach, doing all the things we do, but with slight variations. They use moon-tan lotion, eat salted skeeters and roast bug-mallows, fly themselves as kites, and when they go out in boats they use their own wings as sails.
While the text is well done, the appeal of the book lies in its artwork. Mostly in borderless two-page spreads, in a nighttime color palette enlivened with touches of moon- and fire-light, these gorgeous pictures entice readers to pore over the funny details and beautiful visions. Best of all are the bats themselves, looking very batlike, but with their faces gently rounded to make them look friendly and appealing. Wonderful for bedtime, this enchanting book is sure to become a nightly favorite.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the ways that the bats' night at the beach is similar to and different from a human day at the beach. What are the bats having at the snack bar? What jokes can you find in the pictures? What is "Bain de Lune?" Does the book make you want to have a day -- or night -- at the beach?