Books & Literature

Book Review: Let me Sleep, Sheep, by Meg McKinlay & Leila Rudge

When Amos starts counting sheep, he didn’t expect them to land in his bedroom! Now, how is is supposed to sleep?

A lovely bedtime story about bossy sheep and a tired boy.

Meg McKinlay grew up in Bendigo, Victoria and, after working in a variety of jobs including Honorary Research Associate at the University of Western Australia, she is now a full-time writer. She has written 18 books ranging from picture books for the very young, to young adult fiction and poetry for adults. She has recently released her brilliant new middle years novel, Catch a Falling Star.

ArtistLeila Rudge, who grew up in England, but now lives in Australia, has added her talents to several books written by McKinlay (No Bears, Duck for a Day, and Once upon a Small Rhinoceros) as well as publishing her own books (Ted, and the wonderful, heart-warming Gary).

Rudge has given us a beautiful front cover to Let me Sleep, Sheep which begs us to turn the page. We see a young boy in his bed with two quite large sheep staring at him. But why are they in his bedroom?

This picture book for young children is about a young boy called Amos who can’t sleep so decides to try counting sheep. But how can he sleep when those sheep appear in his room with a THUD! And they are quite bossy sheep as well, demanding Amos build a fence for them to jump over, which never seems to be quite right. They are also very lazy sheep! Poor Amos does his best to cope with their demands.

McKinlay’s text is amusing and heart-warming as we follow the adventures of these bossy sheep in Amos’ bedroom. But it is the artwork of Rudge that really brings the story to life. The gentle colours and detailed illustrations are full of interest. Rudge has used different angles to illustrate size but they also help us see the action through the eyes of Amos.

Inside the back cover, the illustrations have changed from those on the frontispiece, which gives a gentle nod to the text in the story. 

This lovely bedtime book is perfect for all young children but especially those who have difficulty falling asleep. But beware: grandparents, parents and teachers will enjoy it as much as the kids.

Reviewed by Sue Mauger

Distributed by: Walker Books Australia
Released: March 2019
RRP: $24.99

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