Think of that feeling when you see a band you love. You know all the words and everyone around you sings along, hot, sweaty and happy! Nothing like it.
My brother Paul and I have been following the band Guided By Voices, GBV to fans, since our early 20s. This past summer, we got to see them in Cincinnati. Now, GBV fans are a beyond-dedicated bunch. I love GBV but Paul is hardcore. He has made friends through the shows, jumped on stage, and his basement man cave is bit of a shrine. For me, one of the best Facebook posts of 2014 was from Paul’s friend Lee. They were in New York City at a GBV show. “I swear Paul Mace just got a tear in his eye,” Lee wrote as the band came on.
We went to the show in Cincinnati with several of Paul’s friends. We were all married with little kids, thrilled to be going to a rock show on a Friday night. There was singing, sweat, and dancing. Early the next morning, Max and Calvin didn’t care that their mama had been up late but it was worth it!
What does this have to do with children’s books? Paul’s birthday and Christmas gift requests usually revolve around his rabid fandom. This includes posters, shirts, and vinyl records. Last year, he asked for a children’s book written by band member and artist Tobin Sprout. (Paul has two kids.) I ordered a copy for my boys as well. Sprout illustrated and wrote, Tinky Put His Little Moon to Bed.
This rock star’s book is sweet. I love the story’s premise and illustrations. Tinky, complete with Sippy cup and teddy, tries to put the uncooperative moon to bed. The moon and bedtime are such essential parts of childhood; I think that’s why kids relate to it.
Tinky was an immediate hit with my boys. Here’s how they weighed in when I asked why they like it. Max said, “I like it when Tinky tries to give the moon some water.” Calvin’s assessment, “I like how his little hands look like race cars in the moonlight.”
The ending is funny. Tinky finally puts his little moon to bed as a slice of moonlight shines on his diaper peeking through his pajamas.
Where to find the book and other information
You can buy Tinky Puts His Little Moon To Bed from Sprout’s website. Hey kids – he signs it! If you want to find out more about GBV, check out their website or your local record store. Ours is Shake It Records.