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Good Night, Little Sea Otter

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By Janet Halfmannsea otter
Illustrated by Wish Williams
Star Bright Books, Fall 2010
ISBN: 978-1595722546 (Paperback) $5.95
ISBN: 978-1595722775 (Hardcover) $15.95
Also available in Spanish/Eng, Portuguese/Eng, Hmong/Eng,
Burmese/English, Burmese Karen/English, Navajo/English

NEW—BOARD BOOK, December 2016: $7.99 

Ages 3-8, fiction picture book

Buy this book at your favorite bookseller, at
or at Star Bright Books.

The Story

Children will want to settle down for bedtime with Little Sea Otter as he snuggles on Mama'a chest in a cozy bed of sea kelp and bids good night to all his ocean friends. From sea lions to sea snails, seagulls to seals and sea urchins, it seems he'll never close his eyes. But gently rocking seas, twinkling stars, and Mama'a loving arms lull Little Sea Otter—and children everywhere—to dreamland.


The Story Behind the Story

I got the idea for Good Night, Little Sea Otter when I was writing a magazine article about two young scuba divers off California's coast. In researching the many creatures the teens met in the underwater kelp forest, I especially fell in love with the sea otters. I was fascinated by how the mother sea otter wraps herself and her baby in kelp strands for the night so the two won't drift away. I knew I had found the perfect pair to star in a bedtime story! And with four kids and four grandkids, I didn't have to research bedtime stallers!

Curriculum Connecctions

Language arts, life science, family relationships, direction, measurement, colors, textures, shapes

Sea Otter Craft Inspired by Good Night, Little Sea Otter

Bubble wrap sea otter print: Brimful Curiosities



  • "A sweet and creative bedtime story is what you'll find in Good Night, Little Sea Otter. . . .In a unique way, Halfmann helps your little one settle down for sleep. The artwork provided by Wish Williams is outstanding. You feel like you could reach out and touch these creatures as you read along. You can almost hear the movement of the sea." —The Book Connection
  • "This is a lovely bedtime book for all little ones. . . .The soft colorful images of the sea are relaxing and the story itself is very soothing." —Kristi Bernard, The National Writing for Children Center
  • "Good Night, Little Sea Otter. . .is a good fit for preschools and daycares and easily opens conversation about the following subjects: language arts, life science, family relationships, direction, measurement, colors, textures, shapes and more." —Family Literacy and You
  • "Children will giggle over Little Sea Otters' stalling techniques and ooh and ahh over Williams' colorful and cute illustrations of undersea life. A sweet and funny bedtime story that parents and children will enjoy together." —Jean Little Library
  • "The story flows nicely as a relaxing melody, and the beautiful illustrations perfectly complete this magical book." —Just Another New Blog
  • "Little Man and I both enjoyed reading the story before bed, and he was sure he said good night to every single one of his stuffed animals afterward. —Momma's Gone Over the Wall
  • "This sweet story will help kids transition to sleepy time and ends the way all children will like, with Little Sea Otter being scooped by Mama." —Katie's Nesting Spot
  • "GOOD NIGHT, LITTLE SEA OTTER is a sweet, sweet, sweet going to bed story. . . .And the mood of the book has that 'GOOD NIGHT, MOON, the whole world is going to sleep and i am going to sleep too' kind of enchantment that little guys always love." —Carol's Corner
  • Good Night, Little Sea Otter is more than just about sea otters. It's about the community of sea life! Seagulls, sea lions, star fish, and snails are all included in this tale of a little guy who just doesn't want to go to sleep." —Live, Learn, Love
  • "It's delightful on several levels. The story is adorable, with a baby sea otter saying good night to all the ainmals nearby. Mixed in with all the good nights are lots of fun ocean facts. Then there's the art. I've alsways liked otters but illustrator Wish Willims made these especially cute. And the other sea life is sweet, as well." —Read, Write, Repeat
  • "This is definitely a winner of a book, both from the perspective of being a bedtime story as well as a book to learn from, as you discover how it is that otters sleep safe and secure on the ocean waves. It is a very fun mama and baby read aloud book." —Reading to Know

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