Bear E. Bear

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Straight's first book for children (she penned the adult novel I Been in Sorrow's Kitchen and Licked Out All the Pots) is sure to strike a chord with any child who's ever had an absolutely indispensable blankie, stuffed animal or other comfort object. When Gaila's baby sister drops Bear E. Bear in the mud, Gaila and her mother team up to make him presentable again before bedtime. Scenes of the clean-up operation-Gaila helping pour soap into the washer, keeping vigil by the dryer, etc.-are intercut with other glimpses of cozy family life as well as with flashbacks to Bear E. Bear's earlier days (e.g., the time Grandma repaired the bruin's nose). The author's intimate style, perceptive family observations and reassuringly familiar details (``His fur was spiky on top of his head, like my uncle John's hair'') make for a rich mix, though her time shifts may prove slightly confusing to a young audience. Russo's (It Begins with an A) typically upbeat, boldly colored gouache illustrations portray a mixed-race family (happily, there's no fuss or explanation about this in the text). A warm, sympathetic look at a classic childhood experience. Ages 3-7. (Apr.)
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 1Poor Bear E. Bear! Gaila's baby sister dropped him in the muddy water in the gutter, and he has to be washed. Gaila, the narrator, is very talkative and explains everything we need to know; she is obviously a BIG sister, yet her anxiety for Bear E. Bear is touchingly young. A large, warm, extended biracial family is depicted, and one of the special things about Bear E. Bear as noted by his owner is that when they're both clean, they are the same light brown color. Russo's paintings in bright primary colors and simplified shapes include charming details such as a bear-faced flower vase and a teddy-bear border on Gaila's bath towel. Although the text may seem a bit long for four and five year olds, it captures the authentic speech of this age group, and features a common experiencenear disaster to a favorite toythat make it great for family sharing. A successful marriage of illustration and text that features an appealing little girl.Rosanne Cerny, Queens Borough Public Library, NY
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781562825263
  • Publisher: Hyperion Books for Children
  • Publication date: 4/28/1995
  • Edition description: 1st ed
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 5 - 7 Years
  • Product dimensions: 10.14 (w) x 8.30 (h) x 0.37 (d)

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 25, 2001


    This book was writen for my best friend Gaila when she was little. I am now 12, but still like this book. I am not saying this because Gaila is my best friend, but because Susan is a great author who wrote a great book for young kids.

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