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this week's library book

This week's library book is a classic by Bernard Waber titled Ira Sleeps Over. (As you might remember, I'm already a big fan of Bernard Waber's other series about Lyle, the Crocodile.)

A young boy named Ira has been invited to sleep over at his friend Reggie's house for his very first sleepover. But he has a dilemma: whether or not to bring along his beloved teddy bear, Tah Tah. What if Reggie thinks only babies sleep with teddy bears?

"He won't laugh," says my father.
"He won't laugh," says my mother.
"He'll laugh," says my sister. Ira decides not to take his teddy bear.

The kids have a great time until Reggie starts to tell some spooky ghost stories. Ira gets scared and wishes he had brought his teddy. Reggie then reaches into his drawer and pulls out his own teddy bear! Ira is so relieved, he runs home to get Tah Tah.

His sister says: "Reggie will laugh. You'll see how he'll laugh. He's just going to fall down laughing."
"He won't laugh," says my father.
"He won't laugh," says my mother.

"He won't laugh," says Ira.

I always love hearing about the authors of my favorite books. You can read more about Bernard Waber over on the Houghton Mifflin website. I especially liked hearing about how he got started illustrating books.

"My involvement with children's books originated with some illustrations of children I carried in my art portfolio. Several art directors suggested that my drawings seemed suited for children's books. At the same time, I was also having read-aloud sessions with my own three children. I am afraid enthusiasm for "their" books began, in fact, to cause them occasional discomfort. "Daddy, why don't you look at the grownups' books?" they once chided as I trailed after them into the children's room of our local library. Before long I was mailing out stories and ideas to publishers. Rejections followed, but after a time a cheery encouragement arrived from Houghton Mifflin Company, and to my delight, a contract was offered."

Imagine if Mr. Waber had given up when he received that first rejection letter?

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Reader Comments (14)

What a sweet story. I'll have to look for that one in our library. Your library book reviews are made infinitely more charming by the presence of little hands, teddy bears, and silly bandz. :)

07.14.2011 | Unregistered Commenterr8chel

Thank you for sharing! Children's books are wonderful :)

07.17.2011 | Unregistered CommenterPattie

Excellent choice - it's always a hit with my students:)

I LOVE this story! We have it as an audio book with the author (I think) reading it and it's so charming.

07.25.2011 | Unregistered CommenterAnna

I've love Bernard Waber's books since I was a child... Lyle the Crocodile is still such a wonderful character! Back in the mid-90s I worked in the children's section of a local bookstore and got to work several signings by Mr. Waber--somewhere I still have a Lyle drawing made just for me, signed poster, and several Lyle books signed by the author (also with little Lyle drawings!). He was so sweet, and lived locally (on Long Island in NY) so I had a little extra hometown pride about meeting him.

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