From School Library Journal
K-Gr 1–In the first book, Little Bear's grandfather is cleaning his attic, and the activity provides both a teaching moment and an opportunity to explore the contents of his sea chest. Little Bear learns about the Marco Polo, and, caught up in the moment, the two share an imaginary trip in the boat, followed by a visit to the nearby docked vessel. Water-washed ink drawings display a series of family vignettes and Little Bear's activities while appropriate simple sentences and childlike questioning keep the pages turning. The two travel around the world through their imaginations, visiting a polar bear, panda, and koala “bear.” In the second book, the uncomplicated, practical soul introduced in Detective Dinosaur (1996) and Detective Dinosaur Lost and Found (1998, both HarperCollins) returns in a trio of investigations. As he follows instructions literally, “undercover work” translates to wearing layers of clothes, mysterious blobs under his naptime blanket terrify the Detective, and sunny skies bring an unexpected, puzzling dousing. The dino's genial expressions projected in colorful pen-and-ink and watercolor cartoons follow the action. Conversation and onomatopoeia spice up the text, presented in large font. The good detective always ends a chapter “Case Closed.” His innocent confusion creates entertaining problems with simple solutions. Solid additions to easy-reader collections.Mary Elam, Learning Media Services Plano ISD, TX
© Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
About the Author
James Skofield has written several picture books as well as the I Can Read Books Detective Dinosaur and Detective Dinosaur Lost and Found. He lives in Walpole, NH.
R. W. Alley has illustrated over a hundred books for children, including Enzo Races in the Rain! and the Paddington Bear books by Michael Bond. He received a Theodor Seuss Geisel Award Honor for Pearl and Wagner: One Funny Day by Kate McMullan. He is also the illustrator of There's a Wolf at the Door, a Washington Post Best Book of the Year, and There's a Princess in the Palace, both written by his wife, the talented Zoë B. Alley. He lives with his family in Rhode Island.