Parents' Guide to

Waking Up Wendell

By Dawn Friedman, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 4+

Fun, friendly look at neighbors' wake-up routines.

Waking Up Wendell Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 10+

Based on 2 parent reviews

age 18+


So innapropreate I read this book and it talked about vine, 13 Reasons Why and COD. It gives examples of reasons not to be savage I do not recommend this book. It talks about dead things like vine.

This title has:

Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much consumerism
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
age 2+

One of my all-time favorites

Adorable book to read babies through early readers. Beautiful funny illustrations. Read aloud together as a different noise wakes each family on Fish Streetn.

This title has:

Educational value
Great messages
Great role models

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say: (2):
Kids say: Not yet rated

This fun and friendly book illustrates a neighborhood waking up. Each household wakes the next with the kind of domino effect that fascinates kids. While it's a rare person (or pig) who's at their best first thing in the morning, these characters are appealing in their grumbling, reluctant grogginess. Parents should be prepared to add some sound effects -- Mr. Krudwig wakes up to bird song, Leopold starts to bark, and Mrs. Musky's tea kettle whistles awake her neighbors. The neighborhood wakes up in order of their house numbers -- from #1 Fish Street to little Wendell Willamore who gives the book its title at Fish Street #10 -- making this a counting book as well as a story book. Kids can trace the book back to the start, too, since outside Wendell's window peeks the little bird who sang the street awake.

Tad Hills' colorful pictures painted with broad strokes complement the bright morning tone of the book. And the funny details throughout make this even more fun to read aloud. (The Darjeeling family with five kids tucked into their king-size bed have a book on the side table titled Whose Bed Is It Anyway? Many parents can relate!)

Book Details

Did we miss something on diversity?

Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate