Waking Up Is Hard to Do
Neil Sedaka, performer
Grammy Award–winning singer/songwriter Neil Sedaka has written more than a thousand songs and has been inducted into the Song-writers Hall of Fame, and has a star on Hollywood Boulevard. In his fifty-plus-year career, Sedaka has sold over sixty million records, but he does not rest on these laurels. He continues to write, record, and perform worldwide. His first book for children was the popular Waking Up Is Hard To Do.
Read more about Neil Sedaka.
Daniel Miyares, illustrator
Daniel Miyares was born and raised in Simpsonville, SC. As a child, he loved telling stories with pictures even before he could write. He earned a BFA in illustration from Ringling College of Art and Design in 2002 and has since worked for Hallmark Cards Inc. Daniel currently lives near Kansas City with his wife and young daughter.
Read more about Daniel.
"Don't you cry and don't be blue,/ Wakin' up is hard to do," reads veteran singer-songwriter Sedaka's upbeat adaptation of the 1962 chart-topping tune, "Breaking Up Is Hard to Do," which he wrote with Howard Greenfield. As in the original version, the new lyrics are repetitive, but plenty jaunty, too; there are some stumbles in logic, as when Sedaka invites readers to "Just listen to the birdies sing,/ And the flowers that await the spring." With half-lidded eyes, a young alligator struggles through his morning routine—brushing his many teeth with an oversize toothbrush, before heading downstairs for breakfast and out to the school bus, finally ready for the day ahead. Miyares's funky cartoons are peppered with fun details: during the gator family's boisterous breakfast, the text reads, "Wear a smile, don't you be blue," and while the alligator doesn't take this advice, his bacon and eggs do. Though the electric artwork tends to be quite literal, it certainly captures the brightness of a new day. Sedaka performs this song and two others on an accompanying CD. Ages 5–8. (Sept.)
School Library Journal
Grammy-award winner Sedaka has rewritten the lyrics of his 1962 and 1975 chart-topping tune to create this child-pleasing book. The alarm clock is ringing, birds are singing, breakfast is warming, and school is calling. The repeated chorus, "Wakin' up is hard to do," will allow children to chime in. There are some breaks in the rhyme pattern, but overall the lively nature of the lyrics will keep kids engaged. A young alligator moves through his morning routine of brushing his teeth with a large toothbrush, going downstairs for breakfast, and catching the school bus while still fighting the sleep in his eyes. The charming art has fun details and an adorable cast of animal characters. Family portraits in the stairway and the smile created from bacon and eggs at breakfast are pleasant extras for those who pay close attention to the illustrations. A CD includes the title track as well as two new songs: "Lightnin' Jim" and "Sing." —Sarah Polace, Cuyahoga County Public Library, Parma, OH
Yellow Brick Road (mention), November/December 2011
Here's a rollicking commentary on an experience we all know! The book comes with a CD with 3 songs by Sedaka, including the wake-up song.
Hardcover with CD
Ages: All ages
Page count: 26
11 3/8 x 10 1/2