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Are You Awake?

4.04  ·  Rating details ·  252 Ratings  ·  77 Reviews
Edward can't fall asleep, and like most children, he has a million questions burning to be answered even though it's way past his bedtime.

In this funny picture book about the all-familiar bedtime negotiations between child and parent, Edward and his mother talk about everything from yellow dogs to corn on the cob. Most children (and parents) will recognize themselves in th
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published May 24th 2011 by Henry Holt and Co. (BYR) (first published May 10th 2011)
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Jul 13, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-books
A cute book about a little boy who can't sleep, but I don't see it as a book that children will particularly enjoy. Too many words for little ones, and not much of a story. Parents will enjoy it, as some of the exchanges between Edward and his mother are particularly amusing.

Is Daddy awake?
I hope so
Why do you hope so?
Because he's flying a plane."
Nov 16, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picturebooks
This sounds very much like a time that the author/illustrator is remembering. Very amusing.
Alyson (Kid Lit Frenzy)
I loved this book. It's one of those that make you chuckle books. I loved the whole back and forth question thing between the little boy and his mother. I could hear this dialogue really happening.

Kate Hastings
Jun 09, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picturebooks
HILARIOUS! Love! A child keeps asking a mom questions are she tries to sleep. Like a picture of my life. What fun!
Russel Moreno
Jun 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: sophie-blackall
Are you Awake? is about a young boy who wakes up his sleeping mom and asks her a bunch of questions. He asks her a lot of repetitive questions and a lot of “why?” questions which leads to the mom answering “Because its night time” a lot. It later leads to him asking about his dad and we learn his dad is a pilot and is why he isn’t there at the moment. The mom then reverses it and asks the son a lot of questions that leads to the kid falling asleep. His dad arrives in the morning and the last pag ...more
Kit Feral
Jun 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
I don't think this is so much for kids. but as someone with three frequent morning larks who ask a lot of questions I appreciated it. and I love anything sophie blackall illustrates.
Jan 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-in-2018
I absolutely loved the flow of the lines and the rhythm of the book.
Nov 27, 2017 rated it liked it
I suspect many parents will find this one familiar.
Katie Fitzgerald
Sep 18, 2011 rated it really liked it
Ever since I read Big Red Lollipop, Sophie Blackall has been at the top of my list of favorite illustrators. I love the way she draws faces and body language to convey the emotions suggested by a story's text. This new book, Are You Awake, is the first she has written as well as illustrated. It is the story of Edward, a little boy who can't sleep, and his mother, whom he keeps awake all night with a game of twenty questions, which include inquiries about his father, who is at work piloting a pla ...more
Feb 24, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
Edward wakes up in the middle of the night and can’t sleep. Luckily, his mother is right there though she is sleeping. But Edward has so many questions to ask, that he can’t help but ask them right then and there. The recurring question is “Why is it still nighttime?” His mother has many answers for that question: the alarm clock hasn’t rung yet, the sun hasn’t risen yet. But Edward continues to ask a series of spiraling, looping questions that are endearing, charming and yes, enough to keep eve ...more
Jessica Harrison
Feb 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture, reviewed
review via Cracking the Cover
“Mom. Mom. Mommy. Momarino. Mommy. Mom. Mom. Mom. Mom. Mom.”


“Love you.”

This familiar conversation similarly plays out in Sophie Blackall’s “Are You Awake?”

Edward can’t sleep. And like most kids that can’t sleep, he’s got lots of questions he wants answered, even if that means waking up Mom. What follows is a series of often-humorous questions that most parents can identify with.

“Are You Awake?” should be part of Kids 101. I showed it to my husband and his eyes
Oct 10, 2011 rated it it was ok
The genre of this book is a picture book, and is intended for children who are (P) ages five to eight. This book is about a little boy who wakes his mom up in the middle of the night, and holds a conversation with her. The child asks his mom hundreds of questions until the sun comes up and he has finally fallen to sleep. There isn't really a plot or story to the book, it is just a conversation. It is just a boy asking his mom random questions. The illustrations are not very colorful. The main co ...more
Dec 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This cute little picture book is about a child who asks many questions. While growing children question everything they see either because they want to know more about it or they don’t understand. The story starts off with a little boy asking his mother is awake. The moment the mother responds he keeps up the interrogation till the mother figures out how to get the child to quiet down and fall asleep. The images were fun to watch as I saw this little child jump on his mother and ask random quest ...more
Jul 30, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-book, night
This is a great look at a child wanting to be awake before it really is time to be awake.

Yes, Edward?
Mom, are you awake?
Mm-mm. No.

On this page you see a little boy pulling open one eye lid of his trying-to-sleep mother. The colors are dark with lots of black, white, and grey. As it gets closer and closer to morning, more colors are introduced. Some blue, green, pink, then yellow. Also, as it gets closer and closer to morning Edward starts to talk less and less while Mom starts to wa
May 26, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: children
The french version of this children's book has just come out and I was hooked as soon as I saw the cover (where the little boy pulls his mother's eyes open in the middle of the night asking 'Are you sleeping ?')

You know it's gonna be funny.

I like the random and sometimes circular questions. It gives a lot of rythm to the reading. It's not so hard to play the part of the kid who's hyper because he cannot sleep and the utter tiredness of the mother. I read it to my son and he was laughing all thro
Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
Nov 22, 2011 rated it really liked it
Edward is awake. It is nighttime. He wakes his mother up and engages her in conversation for a long time until he finally falls back to sleep. His dad arrives home at the break of day after working all night as a pilot and goes straight to bed. Edward tries to wake his dad up at the conclusion of this story.

This story will be a familiar one to parents of young children. Parents will be able to appreciate its realism.



“What does your face look like when you’re asleep?

I don’t know.

Why don’
Sarah Souther
Feb 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing
A strangely circular conversation takes place in the dark: "Mom, are you awake?" "Mm-mm. No." "Why aren't you awake?" "Because I'm asleep." Edward just can't sleep, and so spouts questions to his patient, but sleepy mother. Blackall perfectly captures the tone of parent and wakeful child with soft humor. The muted colors of the illustrations capture the nightime mental fog of a parent and the curvy body language of a wiggly boy. Action bonus: a sort of flip-book feature. Watch the elephant toy i ...more
T Crockett
May 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
I belly laughed reading this book. The cover is utterly misleading in that it looks like it will be some sort of syrupy rhyme about going to sleep. Not one bit.

I loved the illustrations and the way the author caught the difference in tone between a wide awake child and a barely awake parent. The dialog is really well done. You can feel when the parent is fully awake, without any extra cues from the author. And it's funny. Funny in a way an adult, a 4 yr old and a 2 yr old can enjoy. This may be
Jul 20, 2011 rated it liked it
I like this title althought it doesn't present a strong option for a storytime setting. With tiny print that details a conversation between a little boy and his mother when he can't sleep at night and sweet but smaller scale illustrations with details, this is better shared with a small audience of one or two. It may be especially appealing to children who have fathers who are working at this case an airline pilot. Parents will get the biggest chuckle from this book as they will under ...more
Megan Renner
Apr 08, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: etl-2368
Blackball, S. (2011). Are you awake? New York: Henry Holt and Company, Lcc.

A little son asks him mom many questions in the middle of the night once. Mainly why things are the way they are. He continues to ask all the way up until the sun comes up. It represents questions between a mother and child at night time. I rate this book 4/5. I liked it, but did not really see anything that made it stand out from other books.
Jun 21, 2011 rated it really liked it
I adore Sophie Blackall's illustrations. Anyone who's ever had a little one who decides that it's time to get up NOW even though it's the middle of the night will find the humor in this, as will said child. However, I think if it were me writing the book, it would have only been about 3 pages long and then it would have evolved into that OTHER book about going to sleep that is read by Samuel L Jackson.
Ariel Cummins
Mar 06, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
Edward just wants to know if his mom is awake! and also what her favorite color is...and what it's not daytime yet...and why the sun hasn't come up yet...

Really delightfully whimsical illustrations communicate mom's love and also her slight annoyance at being woken up in the middle of the night.

Too small for story time, but an excellent book for when it's time to go to bed. Although it might give some little people ideas...
Jun 23, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-books, 2011
Very sweet book about how a mother's annoyance at a 4am wake-up turns into a lovingly circular conversation with her pre-schooler. I don't think my son's found it as charming, although they did like the little flip-o-rama toy elephant on the bottom left-hand pages. The illustrations were stronger than the story.
Mary Ann
I laughed so much reading this because it brought me right back to having young kids and trying to persuade them to JUST GO TO SLEEP! I have loved Blackall's illustrations for years, and it's wonderful to see her writing her conveys just as much heart, charm and great timing as her illustrations have in all of her other books.
May 03, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I read a preview copy at ALA Midwinter 2011. Not quite sure of the audience (parents? self-aware kids?) but eh, who cares, I loved it. The book is filled with Blackall's characteristic wry humor and gorgeous illustrations. The trim size is notable. This is a very small book, reminiscent of a board book.
Apr 15, 2011 rated it liked it
Really, a 3.5. It's a cute story with equally cute illustrations, just not quite as charming as I'd anticipated. If you know a little one who doesn't always like to sleep, this is an appropriate story to share. My issue with it as a children's book is that it probably appeals more to the adult than the child.
Dec 14, 2011 rated it it was ok
Not as shrill as a real little kid waking you up in the middle of the night and asking "why?" a million times, but only because of the nice art and good-natured mother character. I would have locked that kid to a lamppost down the street and gone back to bed.
Jun 05, 2016 rated it it was amazing
i borrow this book for my son. But it seems i like it more :). that's so sweet, i would miss the tough days we had with our boy in his first year, and now and in the future. that's a book for parent not for kids.
Krys (Black & Write Reviews)
I was giggling quite a bit while reading this cleverly repetitive story. Little Edward can't fall asleep and therefore feels obligate to bombard his sleeping mum with lots of pointless questions that rotate to the same answer. But has a trick, read the book and you'll find out what it is.
Jun 30, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: picture_books
Edward, a not-sleepy boy, has many questions for his mother.

I like how the illustrations show the slow inch of time towards morning, bringing us from nighttime blackness to a sun-washed morning room.
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Sophie Blackall grew up in Australia where she learned to draw on the beach with sticks, which has not altogether helped her sense of perspective. She completed a Bachelor of Design in Sydney, which furnished her with useful Letraset, bromide and enlarger machine skills. The following few years were spent painting robotic characters for theme parks, providing the hands for a DIY television show, a ...more
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