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A Sound Like Someone Trying Not to Make a Sound
by John Irving
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0385746806, Hardcover)In John Irving's ninth novel A Widow for One Year, a creepy children's book author named Ted Cole writes a bedtime story about things that go bump in the night. That odd, gently comical tale is brought to life here with Tatjana Hauptmann's shadowy, moonlit pencil illustrations. Young Tom wakes up in the middle of the night to an unusual sound, but his two-year-old brother Tim does not. When his fathers asks what it sounded like, Tom reveals a number of silly and scary options: "like a monster with no arms and no legs," or "a dog trying to open a door," or "a ghost dropping stolen peanuts"--"a sound like someone trying not to make a sound," in fact. The illustrations--with a smattering of wordless spreads--show the pajama-clad Tom wandering alone through a big empty house as bulges in the wall and long shadows hint at unseen horrors. In the end, the father tells his boys that the sound is just a mouse in the wall. Tom is immensely relieved, but baby Tim screams because he doesn't know what a mouse is, and stays up all night to ward off the furry, mysterious thing. Not too scary, nor too comforting, Irving's picture-book debut imaginatively captures that late-night world where everything looks and sounds a little like a monster. (Preschool to age 6) --Karin Snelson
(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:02:02 -0400)
When Tom is awakened by the sound of a "monster," he tells his father what he thinks he heard.
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