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Review of The Moon’s Almost Here

maclachlan_moon's almost hereThe Moon’s Almost Here
by Patricia MacLachlan; 
illus. by Tomie dePaola
Primary    McElderry    32 pp.
6/16    978-1-4814-2062-4    $17.99
e-book ed.  978-1-4814-2063-1    $10.99

MacLachlan’s lyrical text combines with ethereal illustrations by dePaola in this simultaneously nostalgic and fresh bedtime book. A generous trim size gives dePaola ample space for the sky under which his characters, the mime Pierrot and his child, wander. The big, open sky slowly darkens as they wait for the moon to rise and encounter birds, sheep, and other animals settling down for the night. Although the hues employed are different, the darkening palette of the acrylic paintings is reminiscent of a similarly darkening “great green room”; references to twinkling little stars evoke one famed nursery rhyme while an image of a dog jumping over the moon is a playful twist on another. MacLachlan’s verse is so effortless, particularly in its closing rhymes, that it sounds like one that’s always been here: “Good night fireflies, / Lighting my night. / Welcome white moon, / So big / And so bright.” All elements combine to offer a soothing, beautiful bedtime book that feels classic rather than derivative.

From the May/June 2016 issue of The Horn Book Magazine.

Megan Dowd Lambert About Megan Dowd Lambert

Megan Dowd Lambert is an instructor at Simmons College’s Center for the Study of Children’s Literature. For nearly ten years she also worked in the education department of the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art.



  1. Thank you for your remarks. We checked this book out from our public library and have been reading it to our two-year-old granddaughter at bedtime. She loves this book and has asked for it every night for almost two weeks now. When I first saw it I could not have anticipated it would catch her imagination as it has. I agree, this book has a classic feel. My family grades books simply as “keepers” or “not-keepers.” This book is beautiful and has earned the grade of keeper.

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