Hello, Dark

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Hello, Dark

By Wai Mei Wong
Illustrated by Tamara Campeau
Picture Book for Ages 4–7
ISBN: 978-1-77278-221-9
List Price: $21.95 CAD / $17.95 USD
Hardcover with dust jacket
Trim size: 9 x 10 inches / 22.86 x 25.4 cm
Pages: 32

Publication Date: October 26, 2021

Distributed in the US by Ingram Publisher Services

Rights Available: World ex. North America

In a reassuring bedtime book perfectly pitched to ease sleep anxiety, a little boy overcomes his worries by befriending the darkness.

A little boy faces his fear of the dark by engaging in a conversation with it. Imagining the dark as a friendly shadow creature, the boy comes to the realization that the dark is not only a necessary part of life, but that it can be fun as well! The boy and his new friend play make believe, meditate, and listen to music until it’s finally time to fall asleep.

In Hello, Dark, Wai Mei Wong’s debut offers a mindful depiction of the dark that’s perfect for bedtime and will help even the most restless sleepers find their own comfort after the lights go out. Tamara Campeau’s compelling illustrations depict the boy’s bedroom in deep and rich colour that perfectly evokes the feeling of darkness without being frightening. A note to caregivers at the end of the book relays the author’s experience as an early childhood educator who has often supported families seeking support to manage their child’s fear of the dark and sleeping anxiety.

Reviews:
“A new perspective combats a common childhood fear: the dark. This tale compassionately guides young readers to face their fears.”—Kirkus Reviews

“The title is well-suited to reading out loud in story time settings as the text is rhythmic and repetitive, yet there is enough variety to interest young listeners from page to page… The text is greatly enhanced by the full-colour photographs which are rich in detail and successfully depict movement.”—CM Magazine

Tamara Campeau’s richly drawn illustrations, with their dark colors and nighttime setting, bring out the beautiful details of the darkness instead of its scariness.”—Manhattan Book Review

“The very familiarity of both the child and the setting will make it easy for young listeners to identify with the narrator.  Campeau mixes up the framing of her vibrant digital artwork so that we look at the narrator and the room from a variety of angles, which heightens the book’s visual impact.”—Youth Services Book Review

[A] compelling story which encourages children to gain control of their anxieties. By articulating concerns and re-imagining a negative situation into a positive one, this book celebrates the inner strength of children in overcoming their fear of the dark.”—Canadian Children’s Book News

“Wai Mei Wong gives voice to a child who is afraid of the dark.”—The International Educator

“Wai Mei Wong is an early childhood educator and has drawn on her experiences working with young children and their families to create this beautiful resource which also includes strategies parents and caregivers can use to help ease bedtime anxiety.”—Storytime With Stephanie

“This will be great for parents/caregivers who are looking for additional support in helping their children cope with a fear of the dark… Instead of something to fear, the dark becomes something that is positive.”—Bookishrealm, Goodreads

“[T]he perfect book for children who have a fear of the dark. A parent’s job is to bring positivity into a child’s life and this author gives parents the opportunity to do exactly that.”—Bethany, Goodreads

By addressing a child’s fear as something tangible…Wai Mei Wong has let this child have his fear and helps him, and every child who reads this book, to cope with it.…Artist Tamara Campeau could have given the night the eerie nature that many children attribute to it but this deeply-coloured book is anything but dark.”—CanLit for Little Canadians

“This is a book that directly addresses the fears that some young children have about the dark and allays them. I liked that the boy took control, a good message for kids about how they interact with things in their world, as an active participant.”—Canadian Bookworm

Hello Dark, hits the sweet spot in terms of helping kids overcome an aversion to “the dark.” A simple, sweet storyline has our hero befriending darkness, personified mostly through shadow, and employing child-led solutions to overcoming nighttime fears.”—Mr. Alex’s Bookshelf