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Children's LiteratureThree young children awake to discover that their farm is covered in snow. They decide to use their snow day to go exploring. Before they set forth, their father mentions the cave of the ice bear, a very secret bear that lives in the deepest snow drifts. He tells them it is probably just a fairy tale, but of course they find the ice bear's cave. They meet the ice bear and he tells them about life in the Arctic. The story begins with a firm grounding in reality and moves to fantasy. The fantasy world is not undermined by any explanations of dreams or imagination. Young readers are left with the belief that they might meet an ice bear if the snow drifts are deep enough to form an ice bear's cave. North American readers may be confused by Wellingtons, sledges, and torches, but the illustrations help to clarify boots, sleds, and flashlights. Although it is a nice story, it lacks finesse in the telling. 2002, HarperCollins, Ages 4 to 7.
— Renée Englot