Nov 192014
 

Goodnight Mr. DarcyShare Your Love of Jane Austen with the Next Generation!

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Source: Review Copy from Publisher

Today I have a special guest helping me with this review!!

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When I received a copy of Goodnight Mr. Darcy to review, I eagerly showed Mr. Bingley (my husband) and asked if he was interested in reading it and reviewing it with me. He was only too happy to participate! He loves the BabyLit display we found in our local bookstore and has decided we must purchase the whole collection when we one day have our own child. To be honest…he wants to start buying them now, which I think is adorable. 🙂

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Anyways, this review is coming from the perspective of two readers who are not very familiar with the children’s classic, Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown (shocking, I know!) Mr. Bingley, born in Colombia, didn’t read it as a child, and I honestly can’t remember if I did! My more memorable childhood reads were books by Dr. Seuss, Eric Carle, and Robert Munsch.

Regardless, we were both looking forward to reading this parody of a classic!

OUR THOUGHTS:

Mr. Bingley: I enjoyed the story a lot. Being familiar with Pride and Prejudice, it was nice to see all the key words and familiar characters represented such as: Netherfield, Lydia, Jane, and Mrs. Bennet. The artwork is well done, attractive, and colorful. I liked how they paid homage to Goodnight Moon, with the similar cover, color palette, font, and even saying on one page “Goodnight Moon.”

Meredith: Super fun and cute! With such an abbreviated medium to tell the story of Pride and Prejudice, it looks like the author mostly focused on two main elements – the Netherfield Ball and the happily ever after. 🙂 Keeping it light for young readers who might not be ready for tales of pride, prejudice, and misunderstandings before they go to bed! I loved seeing such beloved characters in this storybook kind of setting. And the ending was perfect with the rhymes chosen!

However, we both agreed that the story did feel a little bit jarring in how it changed from setting the scene at the Netherfield Ball and introducing the guests there, to saying the litany of goodnights. Maybe one more page about the events of the ball/evening coming to an end would have made a smoother transition.

OUR RATINGS:

  • As a Children’s Story: 4 stars

Great for a bedtime story, will lull little ones to sleep with the rhythmic rhyme scheme. If we were reading it to a child though, we’d definitely elaborate the story a little bit. Explaining what “fine eyes” are and why Mr. Bennet has to say “hush.”

  • As a Parody: 5 stars

Perfect! There many little touches that were added to pay homage to Goodnight Moon, including a a cute little mouse!  Looking through the amazon preview of Goodnight Moon, we see there are so many lines and images that are alluded to in this parody.  Very impressed.

  • As an Austen-Inspired Work: 4.5 stars

Represented Jane Austen’s era and characters very well! Austen-lovers will definitely appreciate all the subtle nods to Pride and Prejudice.

OUR FAVORITE PART:

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Of course, right? 🙂

 

OUR VERDICT:

The books published by BabyLit are a fabulous way for literary minded adults to share their love for great classics with their children/grandchildren/nieces and nephews. Want your children to know Mr. Darcy, Elizabeth Bennet, and Jane Austen? Start ’em young! Goodnight Mr. Darcy is a brilliant way to introduce young children to the world of Jane Austen!

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GIVEAWAY TIME!!!

The kind people at Gibbs Smith have kindly donated ONE lovely hardcover copy of Goodnight Mr. Darcy for me to give away to ONE lucky winner!

Goodnight Mr. Darcy

To enter this giveaway, leave a comment.

What is one of your most favorite childhood reads?   What childhood classic would you like to see made into a Austen-Inspired parody.

  • This giveaway is open for US residents.  Thank you, Gibbs Smith!
  • This giveaway ends November 24th!
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  37 Responses to “Goodnight Mr. Darcy – Kate Coombs”

  1.  

    My favorite childhood read was Baby Island. Considering we now have 7 children I think it had an impact on me. I also loved Goodnight Moon and have read it to all my children.

  2.  

    My favorite childhood book was Anne of Green Gables. This book was a strong influence in my life, reading and enjoyment of books for my children.

  3.  

    My childhood favorite was also Anne of Green Gables. I think Gilbert Blythe was the first boy I ever loved. If I had to pick another one, Little Women is also up there. But I don’t think any of those work as an Austen parody. A rhyming board book would be better, like Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See by Eric Carle. mr. Darcy, Mr. Darcy, what do you see? I see fine eyes looking at me.
    I didn’t realize this was from the BabyLit collection. Those are so cute! We have a bunch, but there are more available than I realized.
    Thanks Mr. And Mrs. Bingley for your review!

    •  

      That’s an awesome idea, Heather! I think YOU need to write it, you are already on a roll! I loved Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What do You See? Yes the Baby Lit collection is growing! Hubby and I counted at least 14 or 16? I was attracted to the female oriented ones like Jane Eyre, P&P, and Wuthering Heights, but Mr. Bingley was happy to see Moby Dick, Jungle Book, and Sherlock Holmes in there too! 😉

  4.  

    I love it when Mr. Bingley has his share of the conversation!

  5.  

    I loved the Laura Ingalls Wilder Little House books growing up …. “local” Wisconsin girl made it so special 🙂 I really enjoyed reading Sandra Boyton books to my children, and it would be quite funny to see the beloved Austen characters as hippos or barnyard animals !

  6.  

    Well done!!! I do not remember my favorite children’s book, but the one that I read over and over and over again to my daughter was The Monster at the End of the Book about Grover. I would love to read a parody with Elizabeth and her prejudice and misjudgments against Darcy and Wickham done this way.

    It is exciting to me to see these books. The fact that publishers care to expose our young ones to the classics is a HIP HIP HOORAY moment for me. Congratulations to the author and best wishes for many sales and tremendous exposure. And, thanks to you and Mr. Bingley for jointly reviewing this book.

    As a note: My son-in-law, who is Ecuadorian, also did not read when he was young as Spanish children’s books were not available to him. Now, he’s a voracious reader and is enjoying reading Little Golden Books to his children as well as reading classics. Two thumbs up for him as well.

    •  

      Have you purchased and/or read “Everything I Need to Know I Learned from a Little Golden Book”? Yes, – take off on the kindergarten one.

    •  

      Aww! Yes two thumbs up for your son-in-law! I love the idea of children becoming familiar with characters and stories of Mr. Darcy, Jane Eyre, and such and then one day finding it the subject of their high school English class – what an advantage! 🙂

      •  

        You are right, Meredith. I am tickled that my daughter and son-in-law expose the twins to the classics in book form, not just videos. I thank you so much for your review as I didn’t know this type of book existed. Please do not enter me in any of the giveaways. If it sounds like something my family would enjoy I get it for the bookshelf. I have already ordered this (along with 11 others – drat that trigger finger on the buy with one click button.)

  7.  

    I am definitely buying this book for both my grandchildren. I did buy P&P and S&S hardcovers for my granddaughter.

  8.  

    What a fun review! Thank you! For starters, ‘Cinderella’ is a childhood favourite of mine and ‘Little Women’. I know I am not eligible for the draw but I have this book on my wishlist and will be purchasing in the near future. By the way, have you seen the Wang books children’s classics? They use felt characters for their illustrations. The cover of their P&P is with Elizabeth with 6 inches of mud on her dress! Can’t wait to buy those too!

    •  

      Those CozyClassics are adorable! My kid thinks Elizabeth’s muddy dress is so funny. I think the felt dolls are very well done. They’ve done Emma, too, among other non-Austen titles. The Wang brothers are also coming out with Star Wars, Empire and Jedi felt-doll illustrated books in the spring.
      I’m done hijacking your thread now 🙂

      •  

        Yes, I’ll be buying all of them over the next little while! I always like to have a gift for the grandchildren when I see them and a book is always better than a toy…in my opinion. But I didn’t know they were coming out with Star Wars etc! Thanks for the heads up.

    •  

      Yes, Carole! I love the Cozy Classic series!! 🙂 Out of all the new things to buy a newborn, you can be assured that I will derive the most pleasure of purchasing all these books! That’s awesome that you buy your grandkids books! They will be sure to outlast and be more memorable than any toy! 🙂

  9.  

    Fun dual review! Goodnight Moon came after my time, but I read it and a few sequels to my preschoolers when I taught and I read it to a friend’s child. I love this awesome idea of melding the two together. I will have to put it on my babyshower gift idea list.

    As to my favorite childhood picture book stories…I loved Cranberry Christmas and Cranberry Thanksgiving along with many Little Golden Book stories. My mom gifted me the ones I liked when I got married.

    •  

      Oh, I have and love those Cranberry Thanksgiving and Christmas books, also….love cranberries in anything. And we have my husband’s old (falling apart) Little Golden Books. I love the small/hand-sized ones for toddlers.

    •  

      Never heard of Cranberry Chrismas and Thanksgiving – they look cute! Thanks for sharing! I love mash-ups like this too!

  10.  

    My favorite childhood book was Stellaluna! My mom read it to us all the time. I think as a Biology major she was really able to get into this childhood classic about bats! I would; however, love to see We’re Going on a Bear Hunt turned into an Austen Parody!!!!!!!

    •  

      Stellaluna was not out when my children were young but came out at about the time I became a kindergarten teacher. I have a copy now for my grandchildren. I always loved that there was a second story being portrayed in the little pictures at the top of the pages.

      •  

        I have the hardcover of Stellaluna for my son and it came with a stuffed toy bat. It was one of his favourites! We still have both and I will have to find which box they are in so I can read it to my granchildren now when they visit. Another fabulous set of books is ‘Dinotopia’. Gorgeous illustrations.

        •  

          I, too, have a bat and am familiar with Dinotopia…have many dinosaur books…aren’t all kids fascinated by those creatures?

    •  

      Brilliant idea, Tiffany! Wonder what they would be hunting…husbands? 🙂

  11.  

    I loved Ferdinand. It’s about a bull who just wants to sit and smell flowers.

  12.  

    This is beyond cute! I have Goodnight Moon and Goodnight iPad. What a nice giveaway.

  13.  

    Loved both of the reviews! Mr. Bingley did good! 🙂

    Think I need to have this one for my two (almost three) year old granddaughter.

  14.  

    Everyone also needs to check out Mem Fox, an Australian author. I was introduced to her books while studying for my El. Ed. Certificate. She wrote one of my favorites, Guess What. (Look for illustrations of other books on the pages.) And Koala Lou, which subliminally points out to us that we expect heroes to be male. And then there is Wilfrid Gordon McDonald Partridge, which deals with Alzheimer’s. Many other great books. I wrote her and she wrote back 3 times – her limit for fans. I even have a cassette of her reading several of her books.

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