Goodnight moon . . . and hello again

November 29, 2008

We happen to own both a board-book edition and a paperback edition of Goodnight Moon, the sleep-inducing story written by Margaret Wise Brown and illustrated by Clement Hurd. On four different occasions this week, I read one copy of the book to Phil only to have him bring over the second copy, wanting me to read that as well. I must add that this is not one of my favorite bedtime stories.

Why, Phil, why?

At first I worried that he’s not smart enough to realize that the two books are the same. I don’t think that’s the explanation, though. He generally retrieves one copy right after the other, as if recognizing that they are a pair, rather than requesting each at random times.

My second thought was that he finds the story so riveting that he likes to enjoy it twice in a row. But if so, why bother fetching the second book? We could just reread the first one, as we sometimes do with his other books.

My latest idea is that, to a toddler like Phil, the two copies of Goodnight Moon really are two different books. Turning the pages is at least as pleasurable as absorbing their content, so a paperback and a board book provide distinct experiences even if the words and pictures are the same.

That’s my story, anyway . . . and I’m sticking to it.

One comment

  1. try slipping a copy of Good Night Bush into his library. http://www.goodnightbush.com/ might be more entertaining for you.

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