Click here for a link to the Print Version of Sunup Sundown Song.
“Wake up, wake up, my buttercup, my flutterdown and flutterup, my painter and my cutterup, your sleepy time is done.” So begins this silly rhymed storybook by Judy Dykstra-Brown that takes a child from waking up to a go-to-sleep-lullaby, chronicling in between a day full of activities and then the bedding down of the child along with a recap of all the creatures they have encountered during the day at their grandparents’ farm, the zoo and in storybooks. “Humpa, humpa, haravan, the camels in their caravan and puppies on the spare divan are falling fast asleep . . . like the foxes in their lairs, with the fleas down in their hairs. . . . Like your playmates, your teacher, and every living creature.” Sunup Sundown Song takes a child through the entire busy day and lulls them to sleep. Charmingly illustrated with fine details by artist Isidro Xilonzochitl. Meant to be read to children of all ages.
What Readers Say about Sock Talk:
When a friend hosted a birthday party for me two years ago, I asked all the guests to display their creative skills. When it was Judy’s turn, she read her poem Sock Talk. “Oh Judy you must, absolutely must, publish that work, it is exceptional!” we told her. Much later, I met Isidro, the illustrator, at the Ajijic plaza and was astounded with the quality of his drawings, not yet in color. “Who should the Aunt look like? he asked Judy. “Like her,” she said, pointing to me. So I became to model for Aunt Knox. See those socks and sandals Aunt Knox is wearing? Those are mine.
When you go to buy this book, make certain you read it through and I will make a bet with you that you will think of at least one more person who would value your gift. Such beautiful sounds (best when read aloud) and the boldness and brilliance of the illustrations complete the story. Isidro and Judy make a perfect team. Each picture and word makes us want to turn the page. And who amongst us does not like a happy ending?
One year I told all our children, “You will not be getting much for Christmas. We are spending all our money on the trip to Jackson Hole to go skiing.” They didn’t believe me until each opened a package of socks. Maybe some of you have received a gift that has disappointed you at the time but later were the recipient of a special gift.
Judy is well known throughout the Lake Side area as one of our finest writers and artists. This book is one of her finest works. –Rosemary Dineen, Ajijic, Jalisco, Mexico
This book knocked my socks off! Sock Talk pulled me back into my childhood experiences with a crazy grandmother and her gift-giving choices, only this well-crafted poem by Judy Dykstra-Brown was of a zany great aunt visiting her loved ones. My granddaughter immediately picked up the book and read it out loud to all of us and it not only took on a melody of it’s own but it unfolded a truly remarkable story of anticipation and the expectations we all experience when opening wrapped gifts on special occasions. The illustrations by Isidro Xilonzochitl were the gilded ribbons on this gift of Sock Talk. The pages came alive with beautifully painted images of what seemed like traditional family Christmas scenes but with little twists of surprising details such as a great aunt in Birkenstock sandals and a father in a goatee and a ponytail. This will definitely become an annual read in our family as well as a gift to give to others. –Sharon Wheat, Berkeley, CA
My copies of SOCK TALK arrived and I’m anxious to share them with my grandchildren. The rhyme, illustrations, and font are most appealing. I recommend this to all my friends with grandchildren, no matter what age.—Patty Martin, Sheridan, Wy
Review in Ojo del Lago, Dec., 2014:
Sock Talk By Judy Dykstra-Brown, Reviewed by Antonio Ramblés
Judy Dykstra-Brown’s latest effort, Sock Talk, is a big departure from her earlier works, which include a contribution to the short story collection Agave Maria, and her non-fiction work Lessons From A Grief Diary. Sock Talk is a children’s book,written for ages 6 to 10, and is illustrated by San Juan Cosalá artist Isidro Xilonzóchitl. Most of the sixteen illustrations are colorful full pages. Any child or former child will find the theme of the book familiar, but Judy tells the story quite engagingly with the clear fingerprint of her own childhood experience always clear and present. In this iteration of the tale, an aged maiden aunt gives the mundane gift of socks to the book’s young protagonist year after year, and the child at last resolves to confront her about the practice. The result is predictably unpredictable, and at one point both the child and the reader are resigned to the inevitability of yet another Christmas with no gift but socks: “Why don’t you try them on, my dear?” my Aunt Knox asked with awful cheer. And she was grinning ear-to-ear as she held out some sox with seals emblazoned on their toes and heels.” While the book is subtitled “A Christmas Story,” its related messages – that there’s more to things than meets the eye, and that a gift horse is not to be looked in the mouth – has an evergreen relevance. Written in rhyming verse, this book runs about 1,500 words. The writing style is reminiscent of Dr. Suess, and although it lacks the good doctor’s edginess and fanciful villains, it begs to be read aloud. The illustrations harken back to a time before computer animation. Their composition seems often almost Rockwell-esque, and the style evokes illustrations from children’s books of the ‘50’s and ‘60’s. The author has dedicated the book to her niece, with the clear implication that the author herself has a history of sock-giving. The book is available on Amazon as a Kindle e-book for $6.99, and as a large-print paperback for $12.99, and is the first in a planned series.
(for other reviews, go to Amazon)