Tuesday, November 28, 2017

The Curious Cares of Bears by Douglas Florian, illustrated by Sonia Sanchez

I liked the first collaboration between Florian and Sanchez. I was eager to see if they could repeat their poetic, humorous, and sweet collaboration with one of my favorite animals - bears - and they did.

A series of colorful, plump bears fill the pages as they frolic through the spring, summer, and autumn days. It's not all fun and games though - there's climbing trees for honey, collecting bugs and berries for family feasts, biking across the mountains, and exploring the forests. This silly story mixes fact and fiction equally, showing bears diving for salmon in one picture and biking vigorously across rocky hills in the next. The rhyming text will take a little rehearsal to read smoothly as Florian likes to mix up the rhythm. I really like Sanchez' sketchy illustrations, full of humorous expressions, dancing bears, and splashes of color.

Usually I prefer more fact-based books when I'm looking for stories about animals, especially hibernation and bears. I think this would work well in a hibernation or fall storytime though, just because it will get even little kids thinking about how to figure out which things are true and which aren't in a story. Obviously bears don't ride bicycles, but do they eat bugs and berries? How do we know which are things bears can and can't do? This would also mix nicely with a storytime on family get-togethers, since many scenes feature the bears celebrating together as a family.

Verdict: Match this with Sayre's Eat like a bear and Arnosky's Every autumn comes the bear for a great fall storytime.

ISBN: 9781499804621; Published 2017 by little bee; Review copy provided by publisher; Donated to the library

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