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The Million-Dollar Bear

The Million-Dollar Bear

by William Kotzwinkle, David J. Catrow

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
The author of E.T. the Extraterrestrial serves up the sentiment in this entertaining if familiar tale. Like the Velveteen Rabbit before him, the Million-Dollar Bear is a winsome, well-worn, stuffing-filled creature with an almost melancholy yearning for something greater-in his case, freedom from the vault of Argyle Oldhouse, a wealthy eccentric with a passion for plush teddy bears. So named-and so valued-because he is the original teddy bear, the Million-Dollar Bear inevitably falls victim to a bear-napper (``All's fair in love and bears,'' declares the assailant). Following a series of standard-issue escapades, the Million-Dollar Bear eventually, happily, finds himself in the arms of a humble but appreciative child, whose grandfather cheerfully proclaims the bear ``not worth a red cent.'' Forlorn-looking Million-Dollar Bear and the many ursine supernumeraries are typical, cuddly examples of the teddy bear genus, in marked contrast to the human characters, whose highly exaggerated facial and body features evince Catrow's background in cartoon illustration. An unexpectedly conventional creation from a proven, unconventional imagination. Ages 4-8. (Oct.)
Children's Literature - Gina Sides
Award winning author, Kotzwinkle writes a tale to treasure. Two hilarious characters-wealthy, old, teddy-bear collectors-battle to own the first "original" teddy bear. The "Million Dollar Bear" escapes the lonely vault where J. P. Plumpgarden keeps him for safekeeping. A boy, Biff Bang, finds the bear and takes him to his humble home. Biff's baby sister adopts the bear who now considers himself, "the happiest bear on earth," especially since no one knows his monetary worth.
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
K-Gr 2A writer for adults and a political cartoonist have concocted a situation in which two cranky millionaires, both avid collectors of teddy bears, scheme to possess the one and only original bear. The Million-Dollar Bear feels sadly isolated living in a burglar-proof, temperature-controlled vault, and rejoices when he is accidentally carted away by the Squeegee Cleaning Company. Bouncing out the rear of the truck onto a trash heap, he is rescued by a little boy, taken home to a loving family, and pronounced, much to his relief, to be not worth a red cent but a perfect companion for a toddler. Meanwhile, after a futile and agonizing search, the millionaires comfort one another by wallowing on the floor together with a huge collection of regular teddy bears, who are delighted to be the center of attention for once. The long, witty text, simply and expressively written, reads aloud well, and the message that being loved is far more precious than having riches is clear and satisfying. The ludicrous story is vigorously and appropriately illustrated with splashy, bright, full-and double-page spreads in which the human figures are satirically caricatured, with exaggerated features. The pictures are filled with clever details, active lines, and dozens of wistful, fuzzy bears.Patricia Pearl Dole, formerly at First Presbyterian School, Martinsville, VA

Product Details

Random House Children's Books
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
9.77(w) x 10.81(h) x 0.35(d)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

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