We are sad to hear the news about Ray Bradbury passing today. His dystopian novel, Fahrenheit 451, cautioned us about the dangers of a world where people don’t read books, enjoy nature, or converse meaningfully with one another. It’s been almost 60 years since it was first published, and it’s still as relevant today as it was then.
Also just as relevant is Bradbury’s children’s book called Switch on the Night. It’s the story of a little boy who does not like light switches because they switch off the light. But he meets a girl named Dark who shows him that light switches also switch on the night. And that the night can be magical.
Lots of kids are afraid of the dark, and Switch on the Night is excellent choice for a bedtime story. It’s bound to help ease nighttime anxieties and get kids open to the idea that the dark is nothing to be afraid of.
The current version of the book has great M.C. Escher-esque illustrations that work well, but if you can find the 1955 version illustrated by Madeleine Gekiere, you’re in for treat. You can see some of her illustrations for this book at Vintage Kids’ Books My Kid Loves.
Mr. Bradbury will be missed, but lucky for us he left behind a wealth of books for us and future generations to enjoy.