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Children's LiteratureLars, the adventurous character from the "Little Polar Bear" stories, is as brave as they come in this tale of courage and friendship. His best friend happens to be Robby the seal, and he never once tries to eat him, even though seals are typically the feast, and not the friends, of polar bears. Lars and Robby don't let the older polar bears break up their friendship when Lars saves other seals by warning them when the bears were looking for lunch. While the beginning of this story focuses on the importance of friendship and the acceptance of diversity, it gently changes its tone to one of suspense when the polar bears and seals begin to go hungry because the fish, which they both eat, have disappeared. Lars and Robby team up to investigate this mystery and see if they can resolve the fishy situation. This book is based on the story by Hans De Beer. 2003 (orig. 2001), Sterling Publishing Co, $.6.95. Ages 5 to 8.
—Cherie Ilg Haas