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Shhh! The Baby’s Asleep

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Baby is finally asleep, and Mama is trying to shush the rest of the family; but when they are all finally quiet baby wakes up--and it is up to big brother Dante to find the right book to read so everyone can get some rest.

32 pages, Hardcover

First published June 15, 2021

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About the author

JaNay Brown-Wood

35 books55 followers
JaNay Brown-Wood, PhD is an award-winning children’s author, educator, and scholar. Her first book Imani’s Moon won the NAESP Children’s Book of the Year Award, and her second book Grandma’s Tiny House: A Counting Story received a starred review from Publisher’s Weekly and won the CELI Read Aloud Book Award. She has several poems published including Falling Leaves in the poetry anthology Thanku: Poems of Gratitude (Lerner/Millbrook, 2019) a Chicago Public Library’s Best Informational Books for 2019, an American Library Association Notable Children’s Book, and a Notable Children’s Book for the Global Society. She has more than seven forthcoming books including Shhh! The Baby’s Asleep (Charlesbridge, forthcoming 2021), Where in the Garden a four-book series (Peachtree, forthcoming 2021, 2022, 2023) and Jam, Too (Nancy Paulsen Books/Penguin Random House, forthcoming 2023). She is represented by the fabulous Karen Grencik of Red Fox Literary. Learn more about her here at www.janaybrownwood.com or follow her on Twitter @janaybrownwood.

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5 stars
100 (34%)
4 stars
119 (41%)
3 stars
63 (21%)
2 stars
3 (1%)
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2 (<1%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 67 reviews
Profile Image for Afoma (Reading Middle Grade).
613 reviews335 followers
May 28, 2021
Shh! The Baby’s Asleep is an entertaining, relatable, and heartwarming story with enough silliness to delight young readers. Highlighting the joys of family, intergenerational relationships and the quirks of having an exuberant family. I would highly recommend this one for story times and especially for families with a new baby! Perfect for ages 2 and up.

Read my full review on my blog.

Many thanks to the publisher for a free review copy.
Profile Image for Jeanie.
2,906 reviews1 follower
June 1, 2021
Anyone who has had a infant will appreciate this book for big brother or big sister. Shhh Baby is asleep. It takes a family together to take care of baby in many different ways and also gives the family a peace of mind and sanity when baby is asleep. I like the culture implications of this book as well. Cultures are different but also the same. We all care if baby sleeps.

Your child will take ownership of being a big sister or big brother in this helpful book.

A special thank you to Charlesbridge and Netgalley for the ARC and the opportunity to post an honest review.
Profile Image for Emily.
1,262 reviews10 followers
January 26, 2022
Family members are making noises all around the house, then are shushed! Simple text with great sounds to emulate. The illustrations are bright and fun.
Profile Image for Edshara.
327 reviews13 followers
December 16, 2021
This was a library favorite. This was read multiple times and we extended our checkout twice. Loved the illustrations and the characters, along with all the different sounds.
336 reviews31 followers
July 15, 2022
This just came in with one of our new title shipments, and I'm so glad I took the time to read it, because it would make a GREAT storytime book!

The cumulative rhythm of each family member telling the next "Shh! The baby's asleep!" builds to a crescendo when the neighbor's dreaded lawnmower rouses the baby with an almighty wail--which would be a lot of fun to do in story time, especially with kids participating by repeating the refrain.

All is not lost, because a shared book lulls the family to sleep--everyone but the wakeful baby!

(This would also make a great Big Book. My team has been doing a lot of outdoor storytime, and it's really difficult to make anything other than Big Books work with the size of our space/crowd, though we've found a few. Unfortunately, there seems to be only one company that _makes_ Big Books, and their selection is frankly pretty old and not very diverse. I love Brown Bear, Brown Bear and Chicka-Chicka Boom-Boom as much as the next librarian, but I really wish they'd do some titles that are actually _recent_.)

UPDATE: I finally got to use this in a Saturday family story time, and it was indeed a big hit!
Profile Image for Karen Yin.
Author 9 books38 followers
August 14, 2021
This story is pretty perfect! It has satisfying rhymes and fun-to-say onomatopoeia, and the illustrations are engaging and expressive. I enjoyed getting to meet and learn something about the whole family. A must-have book. No baby in the house required for immense enjoyment.
Profile Image for Paulina M..
562 reviews16 followers
May 16, 2021

We follow a hilarious family that can’t seem to stop making noise, even when the baby has just fallen asleep. No doubt baby’s nap doesn’t last long, but she can count on her big brother to put her back to sleep with a book!

The representation in this book is terrific, Elissambura’s illustrations were hilarious, bright, and I feel they told JaNay Brown-Wood’s story visually in a perfect way.

I love how the book shows a multigenerational family who lives together and that each seems to live in harmony. As soon as they realize the baby is sleeping, they join the “silence crew.” After all, we all know what will happen when the baby wakes up!

I had a lot of fun reading this book; it was relatable in all the good ways! I will be purchasing that book for my classroom, and I can anticipate it being one of my fave books to read with children!

Disclaimer: I first read it as an ARC. In exchange for an honest review, I am thankful to JaNay Brown-Wood, Charlesbridge and NetGalley for providing me with a copy of Shhh! The Baby's Asleep.

#JaNayBrownWood #Elissambura #Charlesbridge #ShhhTheBabysAsleep #ChildrenLiterature #NetGalley #advancedreadercopy #ARC #Kindle #FrostaWingsIt #FrostaHeat #Booktwitter #bookstagram #bookworm #booklover #bibliophile #bookaholic #bookreview #bookreviewer #diversity
Profile Image for Aolund.
1,376 reviews11 followers
February 18, 2022
An excellent storytime book. The baby in a multi-generational Black family has jusssst fallen asleep, and each member in turn is warned to "Shhhh!" and stay quiet to preserve the baby's peaceful sleep as they attempt to go about their daily activities. Kids will enjoy saying "Shhh! The Baby's Asleep!" along with the book. The pacing of some of the rhymes is slightly awkward, so would recommend reading through a couple times prior to storytime. Another win for this book is its representation of fat characters! Dad in particular has a fat belly and is shown happily snacking on a PB&J--great and important representation to find in a picture book, even if way too rare.

Themes: Sounds, Sleep, Baby, Family
Age range: Toddler-Kindergarten
Profile Image for Becky.
5,402 reviews122 followers
April 15, 2021
First sentence: Now don't make a peep....the baby's finally asleep.

Premise/plot: It may take a WHOLE family working together to keep the house quiet enough for the baby to sleep--and stay asleep!!! After half a dozen close-calls, will the baby finally wake up?!?!

My thoughts: I liked this one. It is fairly predictable, but in a good, fun way. The refrain is "shhh! the baby's asleep!" I like that the family is LARGE--including a set of grandparents. It is all about descriptions: creak! creak! creak! grumble! grumble! grumble! swish! swish! swish!

I will say this--for what it's worth--babies should sleep with some white noise so that the family doesn't have to be so careful!
Profile Image for Michelle Andersen.
27 reviews2 followers
June 10, 2021
SHHH! THE BABY’S ASLEEP is a comical and relatable book for anyone who’s ever tried keeping a baby asleep. Oh, the lengths we’ll go to, just to keep those little ones sleeping! Kids will love this book and appreciate joining in the fun of reading by repeating the line, Shhh! The baby’s asleep! The illustrations are lively and help prolong the suspense as characters and noises grow louder. Will the baby wake? Who will wake her? What will happen? You’ll want to get your hands on this sweet book to find out what happens when the baby’s asleep.
Profile Image for MookNana.
847 reviews8 followers
June 12, 2021
LOVE this and can't wait to read it for my students! This would be a great circle time read, but would be equally enjoyable in small group or individual reading.

The illustrations are bright, vivid, and gorgeous! The rhymes are smooth and easy. Kids will have a great time imitating the various sounds that threaten to wake the baby and it's a great lesson in onomatopoeia for kids ready for that concept.

Many thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for the opportunity to read and review!
Profile Image for Elizabeth Bedia.
Author 8 books23 followers
July 26, 2021
Absolute adorable fun! This sweet story is relatable and perfect for kids and parents alike. The baby is finally asleep, and the family tries desperately not to wake the baby. Humor abounds through Brown-Wood’s brilliantly clever rhyming text and Elissambura’s illustrations providing a gorgeous, lively backdrop. Children will delight in the refrain, “Shhh! The baby’s asleep!” as well as the onomatopoeia. And everyone will delight in the perfect twist ending. I highly recommend this charming story!
Profile Image for Carol.
Author 75 books10 followers
August 28, 2021
A story centering around the one issue parents and family members can all relate to—don’t wake up the baby! As the family strives to protect naptime, the rhyming text makes this a fun read-aloud for kids of all ages. Love the multi-generational theme as well as the older brother’s important role in helping sooth his baby sister—as well as the entire family! The collage style artwork matches the lively household scenes. The simple premise for the story lays the perfect groundwork for a fun, entertaining book that kids with younger siblings will especially enjoy.

7,487 reviews28 followers
August 30, 2021
I received an electronic ARC from Charlesbridge through Edelweiss+.
Cute story about a family being quiet so the baby can sleep. The story moves in a circle from person to person telling the next to be quiet as the baby is finally asleep. Needless to say, the last creak wakes the baby up and the family all ends up reading together until everyone but the baby fall asleep.
Lovely illustrations capture the love and nurture as well as a family trying to live their lives while adapting to a new baby in the home. Simple to follow text for younger readers.
Profile Image for Roben .
2,160 reviews7 followers
July 23, 2021
A perfect book for any family short on their sleep because of a new (ish) baby, this book would also make a great read-aloud for toddler or preschool story times! There are so many wonderful sounds that kids will enjoy making - from the grumble of a hungry tummy to the creak of the floorboards and the howl of the dog! And, of course, everyone can chime in on "Shhhh!" Sadly, baby does not stay asleep and it is up to big brother to figure out the perfect remedy for sleeplessness.
Profile Image for Akoss.
559 reviews52 followers
August 14, 2021
I received a copy from the publisher for consideration.

This book is so much fun to read with and to a toddler. The illustrations and words have this great balance that allows for a very dramatic reading experience complete with gestures and sounds.

I recommend you check out a copy from your local library or recommend they order one. Also if you can afford to, please get a copy of your own from a bookstore.
Profile Image for Leticia.
282 reviews2 followers
August 25, 2021
It's really hard to get Violet to pay attention to a book now that she's 2. Most of the time I check out books for her that are very short, no long paragraphs. This one kept both Violet and Forrest really engaged the entire time because of the many descriptive words for all the sounds (creak, grumble, achoo, whir, etc.) It also served the purpose of teaching her the difference between quiet and loud sounds because yes... I'm constantly telling her "Shhh the baby's asleep" LOL
Profile Image for Sandra.
87 reviews3 followers
November 19, 2021
Opening with the line, “Now don’t make a peep—the baby’s finally asleep!” Shhh! The Baby’s Asleep tells of the trials and tribulations of keeping a baby slumbering when the house is full of three generations of family, a dog, and a lawn-mowing neighbor. The story is perfectly paired with the dynamic illustrations of Elissambura, making it a modern-day classic. Written in rhyme and loaded with noise-making onomatopoeias, Shhh! The Baby’s Asleep! is grin-from-ear-to-ear storytelling at its best.
Profile Image for B.C. Spines.
443 reviews28 followers
February 10, 2023
I read this for a preschool storytime about being awake/asleep. A baby is sleeping and the book goes through a series of noises different family members make with the refrain "Shhh! The baby's asleep!"

I really like this book! I love books that have refrains because the repetition is good. It was also fun making all the sound effects. I like the ending-- how it ends up with the whole family asleep EXCEPT for the baby.
121 reviews
July 9, 2023
A cute book about all the things that families go through to try and make sure everyone is quiet so the baby doesn't wake up. They go through every family member, including the dog and the neighbor, to try and keep the baby asleep. The illustrations are very bright and vibrant and they have a lot of things going on in the pictures for kids to explore. I really like this book, I think it would be a fun read-aloud for toddlers.
Profile Image for Patricia Newman.
Author 25 books26 followers
May 4, 2021
An adorable rhyming picture book with lots of fun read-aloud onomatpoeia. Kids will love repeating the refrain with increasing enthusiasm and parents will get a kick out of the surprise ending. Elissambura's coloful illustrations will stimulate lots of discussion--and smiles. Another winner from JaNay Brown-Wood!
Profile Image for Erin Dealey.
Author 17 books72 followers
May 11, 2021
Oh parents (and caregivers, siblings, grandparents, readers everywhere!)--> How many times have you heard someone say: "Shhh! The Baby's Asleep!" This wonderful rhymed picture book builds with each spread as noises abound--with such clever sounds--until... Oh, no. I'm not spoiling this one. Read it yourself. Again and again and again!
115 reviews3 followers
July 13, 2021
A family try desperately hard to keep quiet so the baby can sleep, but it turns out families make lots of noise, just doing! From creaky floorboards, to sneezes, hairdryers, and lawn mowers, everyone hears the same repeating line “Shhh! The baby’s asleep!” When the baby is suddenly awakened, the family find the perfect way to all take a nap – reading a book!!
Profile Image for Ina.
1,221 reviews11 followers
September 13, 2021
Filled with humor, bright bold illustrations and bouncy rhyming text Big Brother tries to keep his loud and expansive family from waking up his baby sister. This is a great Storytime audience pleaser - in addition to the illustrations and rhyming text there are noises to make. As a bonus the family is African-American and there is a great twist at the end.
31 reviews
September 27, 2021
Loved this one! Each page describes a different family member/character doing an action that could wake up the sleeping baby in the house. For example, you have "Mr. Young starts to mow. VROOM! VROOM! VROOM!" or "Pop Pop's red nose just needs some good blows. ACHOO! ACHOO! ACHOO!" This was such a fun read with great illustrations of an African American family's household!
Profile Image for Mindy Alyse Weiss.
135 reviews17 followers
June 8, 2021
Kids with younger siblings (and their exhausted parents) should enjoy seeing how a large family attempts to stay quiet so they won’t wake the baby. The illustrations are fun and vibrant and there’s lots of fun read aloud sounds, too.
Profile Image for Mary.
1,817 reviews13 followers
June 20, 2021
What a hysterical story! Being as my kids are no longer babies, I can look back and appreciate the necessity of keeping quiet-to a point. Here in this book every little thing could possibly awaken the little tyke. Even though baby does wake up, very clever that the older baby comes up with a solution to the problem that has it effect-just not on the baby! Laughed myself silly!!
I received an advanced reader copy for free from NetGalley and am voluntarily leaving my review.
Profile Image for Rebecca Ann.
2,797 reviews
July 18, 2021
This is a wonderful storytime book that I am so excited to try out with the toddlers! New siblings can be difficult concepts for toddlers and this is an excellent concept story to help them understand when to control their voice with fun dialogic oppertunities.
Profile Image for Stef Wade.
Author 11 books34 followers
July 27, 2021
Oh, does this story bring back memories! I may be a years removed from tiptoeing out of a sleeping baby's room, but I can remember it all too well! And JaNay Brown-Wood's SHH! THE BABY'S ASLEEP does a perfect, yet playful job of bringing this familiar family situation to life.

This story follows the noises around the house that could wake baby up during their nap. So many things can interrupt the sleeping baby...will baby wake up?? You find out for yourself!

Ellisambura's illustrations are delightful, making it impossible not to fall in love with all these characters.

This book would make a fun read aloud (with so many fun noises to make!) for any sibling who knows this situation all too well.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 67 reviews

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