Title: The Rabbit Who Wants To Fall Asleep by Carl-Johan Forssen Ehrlin
Age Range: 3 – 7 years
Reading Level: Preschool – 2
The Rabbit Who Wants to Fall Asleep Book Review
Have you heard recent buzz about a book touted as a “sleeping pill” for young children? The Rabbit Who Wants to Fall Asleep, written by Swedish psychologist Carl-Johan Forssen Ehrlin was published this year and has become an amazon.com bestseller. The book has gained worldwide notoriety with articles written about it on the Huffington Post, CBS News, and the Daily Mail. Parents are purchasing and testing out the book “guaranteed” to put children to sleep.
As I picked this slim paperback, I noticed that it’s self published. One of the things that hurts a self-published book is poor quality packaging and illustrations. Although the lack of a professional published appearance hasn’t stopped The Rabbit Who Wants To Fall Asleep from becoming a bestseller, it’s a difficult hurdle for me to step over when trying to give a positive review. The pictures help illustrate the story in a cohesive manner, but they are not the quality I generally look for and the book has an overall amateurish, homemade feel.
This story opens with instructions: how to read the bolded words, when to say the child’s name during the reading, when to yawn, and how to create the correct environment for sleep. There is also a warning that anyone hearing the story will feel tired, so don’t read this book to anyone who is driving or operating heavy machinery.
Using the power of suggestion, lots of repetition, and word heavy pages the author taps into some of my favourite components for a great bedtime reading experience.
Many picture books currently being published are simply too short for a good bedtime story. They have one sentence per page, lack complex language, and contain overactive illustrations that actually discourage the use of a child’s imagination by dominating the book.
This book is a return to the days when stories were longer, quieter, and more relaxing. Unfortunately, it’s not really a story book – and completely misses the opportunity to be one. Here’s the low-down on why you should read aloud to your child.
The Rabbit Who Wants to Fall Asleep is not the least bit entertaining or interesting. Roger visits characters like Sleepy Snail, Heavy Eyed Owl and Uncle Yawn who give Roger and the child hearing the book suggestions on how to relax and fall asleep.
These characters have no personality of their own. Every encounter and dialog is meant to coach the child into feeling safe, relaxed and very tired.
I imagine hearing this book is like listening to a “self hypnosis” cassette tape. The author uses the same tools with the goal of achieving a specific end result.
I don’t doubt that this book will put many three and four year old’s to sleep, and if adults pick it up with that intent alone, they will reap the rewards of restful children. Not every child will respond to the repetition and sleepy themes, but those accustomed to bedtime stories will almost certainly be snoring by the end of the book.
If your bedtime reading is all about getting your child to sleep, you might want to pick up a copy. If you expect something more out of your books, give this one a pass. For more good reads, Da Poppins reviews a bunch of books on the site.
>Tell us, have you tried The Rabbit Who Wants to Fall Asleep with your children?
Dana shares with us this The Rabbit Who Wants to Fall Asleep Book Review. Dana, Da Poppins, is a professional career nanny based in Vancouver, Washington, a graduate of the prestigious Northwest Nanny Institute and has over 20 years experience in the industry. Dana is a strong advocate for the benefit of reading and children’s literacy, is a talented scrapbooker, and writes the blog Da Poppins.