I’m Brave! I’m Strong! I’m Five!

by Cari Best, illustrated by Boris Kulikov
October 2019 – Margaret Ferguson Books / Holiday House (US)

A not-so-sleepy bedtime story.

It’s bedtime but Sasha can’t fall asleep because of the scary things she sees in her room. Luckily, she uses her imagination to battle her fears until she’s finally ready for sleep.

Sasha has had Mama’s stories and Papa’s jokes and coffee kisses on both her cheeks, but she’s not tired. So she makes a star with her flashlight, a car with one headlight, and a lighthouse that blinks on and off. She checks out the noises outside her window and sees the moon – it is like a giant eye staring right at her! But when she closes her curtains, there are shadows and more noises and scary faces. Instead of calling to her parents, Sasha handles each situation herself because she’s brave, she’s strong, she’s five – and then finally, she’s ready for sleep.

This energetic, gorgeously-illustrated bedtime book is perfect for young readers learning to conquer bedtime fears by themselves.

Cari Best is the author of award-winning picture books, including Sally Jean, the Bicycle Queen; My Three Best Friends and Me, Zulay; and If I Could Drive, Mama. She lives in Connecticut.

Boris Kulikov has illustrated many picture books, including Papa’s Mechanical Fish by Candace Fleming, Barnum’s Bones by Tracey Fern, and Max’s Words by Kate Banks. He lives in Brooklyn,
New York. www.boriskulikov.com


“The multimedia illustrations, with their interesting lighting effects, crosshatching that creates a rich surface effect, and deep nighttime colors, provide an appropriate setting for this engaging bedtime story. Just creepy enough to validate both fears and bravery.”—Kirkus Reviews