This was a Christmas gift to my nephew, and another one that passed me by as it wasn’t printed until I was ten. I’ve seen it on a lot of bookcases in recent years so assumed it was going to be another excellent read. How wrong was I? As I’m not a parent I shouldn’t really judge, but what idiot takes their children and dog to find a bear?
Since children’s book don’t come with a synopsis, I had mistakenly assumed that this was more of a teddy bear hunt or perhaps a story with a friendly bear. Instead, there’s a horrifying journey across dangerous terrain, where they risk death, before intruding on a bear in his cave. I’m going to assume at this point, he was also hibernating. I can’t speak for others here but were you to randomly enter my home while I slept, I wouldn’t respond very pleasantly either. For me, the worst part is that having woken the bear, they turn and run away before closing the door to their house and hiding under the covers. This is just rude, have the decency to invite them in and share a meal. Even if that ends up being you and your family.
My nephew didn’t show an enormous amount of interest until we were close to the end, and there were two pages of smaller panels. He found those quite interesting and didn’t attempt to eat them which we are taking as a positive.
The text is repetitive which makes is easier for you to speak in a rhythm and the illustrations are lovely. Unfortunately for me though I can’t get over the premise of the story, and how stupid the parents are.
Later that day, when my brother-in-law put Toby to bed, he spotted the book was out and so read it to him again. My sister was in the next room and just heard him utter “these people are idiots”, so its nice to know I’m not alone