Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

What About Bear?

What About Bear?

Suzanne Bloom
Picture Book
For ages 4 to 6
Boyds Mills Press, 2010   ISBN: 978-1590785287

Bear and Goose have found a little suitcase that is full of toys. Happily they start to play with some hand puppets, which is when Fox turns up and asks to join them. Bear and Goose start to play with a ball and invite Fox to “Jump right in,” but Fox wants to play hopscotch instead. When they start to play it soon becomes clear that Bear is a little too big to play on the hopscotch outline that Fox has drawn on the ground.

   Fox then decides that they should play checkers. Goose notices at once that Bear is being excluded from the game and asks, “What about Bear?” Fox thinks that Bear is too grumpy to play with them and is quite happy to leave Bear out.

   Making new friends and making sure that everyone is included in games is not as easy to do as one would think. The relationships between individuals who have been friends for a while and newcomers can sometimes lead to problems. In this picture book the author explores this issue with sensitivity and humor. The text is minimal, and it is complimented by the beautifully expressive illustrations.