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Song for a Summer Night

Written by Robert Heidbreder

Illustrated by Qin Leng

  • 32 Pages
  • 9781554984930
  • 8.75" x 9.5"
  • from 3 to 7
  • JUVENILE FICTION / Bedtime & Dreams
  • JUVENILE FICTION / Nature & the Natural World (see also headings under Animals)



Publication Date May 01, 2015

As night falls on a soft summer evening, neighborhood children are drawn out of their houses by the sights and sounds of the world after dark. First the fireflies come sparkling past, followed by a host of domestic and wild animals, from cats and dogs to owls and skunks. Accomplished children’s poet Robert Heidbreder creates a world of enchantment, while Qin Leng’s illustrations conjure the harmonious interplay between our everyday domestic world and one that is just a little bit wilder. All the characters, both human and otherwise, have their moment on the nighttime stage, but eventually, the curtain falls, and sleepiness beckons.


Robert Heidbreder

Robert Heidbreder is an award-winning children’s poet and author. His many books include I Wished for a Unicorn, Drumheller Dinosaur Dance and Song for a Summer Night (Groundwood, 2015), which was short-listed for the BC Book Prize. In spring of 2018, Groundwood will publish Rooster Summer, a new collection of poems. Robert spent thirty years as a primary school teacher and, in 2002, won the Prime Minister's Award for Teaching Excellence. He lives in Vancouver, British Columbia, and continues to do many school and festival presentations.

Qin Leng

Qin Leng lives and works as a designer and illustrator in Toronto. She graduated from the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema and has received many awards for her animated short films and artwork. Hana Hashimoto, Sixth Violin, written by Chieri Uegaki, was a finalist for the Governor General’s Literary Award and received the APALA Award for best picture book. Her most recent books include The Better Tree Fort by Jessica Scott Kerrin as well as Away by Emil Sher and A Family Is a Family Is a Family by Sara O’Leary, which were both selected for USBBY’s Outstanding International Books List.


"A sweet evocation of the pleasures of nighttime." Kirkus Reviews

"A stunning children’s picture book, infused with a subtle déjà vu that invites the reader on a magical journey of remembrance. . . . a glorious feast for the senses of sight, sound, and feeling." CM Magazine

"The atmosphere Heidbreder suggests with letters, Leng amplifies with soft colors, dreamy images, and blended backgrounds. Go ahead: get ready to snuggle in and share this summer lullaby tonight." BookDragon

"The poetry is a soft and lovely lullaby . . . The delicate illustrations, fashioned with ink and brush and digitally colored in pastel tones, evoke the beauty of the quiet night with perfect charm." School Library Journal

"Heidbreder’s gentle rhymes celebrate the natural world from a child’s perspective, perfectly capturing tiny details and the secret thrill of being awake in the wee hours. . . . Sure to become a favourite at bedtime." Quill & Quire

"Equally effective as a quiet bedtime story or as an entertaining group read-aloud, this is a creative and lovely addition to the lullaby canon." Booklist