Henry and Mudge and the Bedtime Thumps

Book Information
Rating: Excellent
Reading/Interest Level: Preschool, Primary
Author: Cynthia Rylant
Illustrator: Sucie Stevenson
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing Division
Year: 1991
ISBN: 9780689801624
Pages: 40

Mudge is Henry’s dog and best friend, which means Henry brings him along wherever he goes, including to his Grandmother’s house for the first time. There are a few things that worry Henry about bringing Mudge along. Henry is worried that Mudge might drool all over Grandmother, that he may eat the coffee table, and that they might make him sleep outside in the dark. Grandmother’s house looks friendly enough and Grandmother doesn’t mind too much when Mudge drools on her, but after Mudge knocks a few things over in her living room he is sent outside for the night. After Henry can’t sleep and is scared by a moth in his room, he goes outside to find Mudge and snuggles up with him on the porch for the night.

Children most likely share many worries and fears with Henry, especially as he ventures to a new place with many unknowns. Cynthia Rylant provides simple, but engaging text that is perfect for beginning readers. Chapters are short and the illustrations directly represent the text. The title doesn’t reflect what the story is about, but just references one very small detail in the book. This book is the ninth book in this ready-to-read series. Readers will most likely recognize the watercolor illustrations by Sucie Stevenson, found in the popular Henry and Mudge books.