Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Utterly Otterly Night

Utterly Otterly Night

Mary Casanova
Illustrator:  Ard Hoyt 
Picture Book
For ages 5 to 7
Simon and Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2011   ISBN: 978-1416975625

It is wintertime and snow is drifting down out of the night sky. In a cozy holt under the riverbank four otters are fast asleep. No, it would appear that only three of the otters are fast asleep. Little Otter is wide awake and he is eager to play, “in an utterly otterly way.”

Little Otter wakes up his sister and parents and then they all go outside. Mama reminds everyone that at “the first hint of danger – we all head in.” Little Otter is not worried about danger. After all, he is a “big otter now,” and can take care of himself. Little Otter climbs a hill and then goes sliding down on his belly. He encounters Rabbit, and he hides in the snow when Owl flies over. When the big bird flies off, Little Otter gets back to the business of playing and sliding.

Then, when Little Otter gets to the top of a high hill, he smells something on the air. He smells danger and he raises the alarm, but his family members are too far away to hear his call.

Packed with wonderful words like “whooshily,” and “friskily,” this delightful picture book brings back the main character that we met in Utter Otterly Day. Once again Little Otter faces dangers, and once again the author and illustrator beautifully convey how delightfully ebullient and fun-loving Little Otter is.