CM . . . . Volume XXI Number 3 . . . . September 19, 2014
This latest instalment in the "Bear" books is just as lovely and enjoyable as the others. The continuity in language and description ("One morning, Bear heard a tap, tap, tapping on his door. When he opened the door, there was Mouse, small and gray and bright-eyed") and in specific details (such as when Bear "buckled up his red roller skates", received as a gift in A Birthday for Bear, and such as Bear's initial gruff demeanour which softens as the story goes on) bring comfort and familiarity in both the story and the characters.
Mouse yet again proves to be influential in Bear's life, convincing Bear to accompany Mouse to the library. While there, Bear discovers his interest in books beyond the seven that make up his personal library at home. The slight humour in Bear's initial disinterest in library books on rocket ships, wooden canoes, and dancing pickles, and his interest the story time book about a "Very Brave Bear" will amuse young readers.
As with the other Bear books, the font style and size change in the story as Bear raises his voice and his frustration emerges. This stylistic element is one that could be a conversation starter for young readers, and it could help them decipher the facial expressions and body language of Bear, even if they are not yet able to read the words.
The illustrations, done more in earth tones rather than in bright colours, are very appealing. The facial expressions and body language of both Bear and Mouse add detail and humour to the images. Even without the text, these illustrations do a good job of telling the story.
Overall, A Library Book for Bear is another wonderful Bear and Mouse book that young readers are sure to enjoy.
Karyn Miehl, a mother of two and a secondary school English teacher, lives in Kingsville, ON.
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