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No Bears Hardcover – March 27, 2012

8 customer reviews

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Waiting
Waiting
Waiting is a big part of childhood. Waiting in line, waiting to grow up, waiting for something special to happen. However, now a child sets the stage and pulls the strings in a timeless, heartfelt picture book about imaginative play, friendship, and surprises. Paperback | More for ages 3-5
$14.74 FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Temporarily out of stock. Order now and we'll deliver when available. We'll e-mail you with an estimated delivery date as soon as we have more information. Your account will only be charged when we ship the item. Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

A little girl named Ella regales children with what she believes a good story should—and shouldn’t—include: royalty, humor, a few well-placed frights, but absolutely no bears. As her make-believe effort unfolds, those paying attention to the illustrations will see that things aren’t going as Ella would have us hear. Indeed, there is a bear: a large and kindly one who adds water so the owl and the pussycat can set sail, literally pulls the strings on the monster’s boots, and even ends up rescuing the fairy godmother. Ella, of course, refuses to acknowledge the bear’s presence en route to her story’s happily ever after. Ella is a delightful and creative mirror for any imaginative child, and the bear is that good parent who doesn’t require recognition, even as she plays an important role in the visual story. Rudge’s busily patterned watercolor pages, comic proportions, and clever details—the billiard-ball-round king’s head; Ella’s own instructions for making a paper crown; the post-rescue party, featuring pigs in tutus and gingerbread men—invite much exploration. Grades K-2. --Francisca Goldsmith

Review

In delicate, curlicued drawings, we see an evil monster stomping through the pages to kidnap a princess "so she could read him bedtime stories every night." Rescue comes when the princess cries out, "Someone save me!" and someone does. Who is this someone? Children ages 5-7 will have been chortling all along because they know that the princess is protected by a fairy godmother who happens to be . . . a bear. A charming fable.
—The Wall Street Journal

Ella proclaims that she is in charge of this book, and this book will have no bears, not a one: "Every time you read a book, it’s just BEARS BEARS BEARS." She decrees that her book will have a monster and a princess and a fairy godmother instead, makes herself a crown, and begins her bear-free tale. Readers, however, can see perfectly well in the delicate and droll illustrations that there is a bear in the book they’re reading... This is a picture book that will send the reader delightedly back again and again to sort out the layers of reality... Both the story and the inventive digital pictures draw readers in deeper and deeper, along with the many fairy-tale details to discover (clever viewers will spot all the usual suspects, from Little Red Riding Hood to Rapunzel to the Three Little Pigs).
—The Horn Book

"I’m tired of bears. Every time you read a book, it’s just BEARS BEARS BEARS," grumps the young narrator. Claiming that you don’t need them, she proceeds to craft a story about a monster who sets out to steal a princess and is ultimately foiled by a fairy godmother. Fair enough—but as is evident from the episode’s first page on, the godmother hovering watchfully just beyond the edges of each scene is unmistakably ursine... Young fans of David Wiesner’s THREE PIGS (2001) and other metafictive romps will be properly amused.
—Kirkus Reviews

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 3 - 7 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 2
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Candlewick; Reprint edition (March 27, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0763658901
  • ISBN-13: 978-0763658908
  • Product Dimensions: 10.1 x 0.4 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #438,805 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Valerie A. Baute on March 31, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Ella is tired of bears. They are in too many stories. This is her story, so there won't be any bears... or will there?
Ella tells us she is going to tell us a story with no bears in it. Her story constantly tells us that there are no bears, and Ella chimes in occasionally to tell us when it's getting scary or tell us how perfect the book is.

I absolutely adored this book. From the very first page, I started reading it out loud. Ella is just so much fun and so easy to read. The pictures are colorful yet simple. It would be perfect to read to a kindergarten or first grade class. It is just too long to read aloud to a group of younger children, and that makes me sad. It would be a great book for one on one reading with a younger child, especially one that is good with sitting through longer books.

There were so many parts of this book that I loved. I could probably quote the whole thing, but that would defeat the purpose of reviewing it. With words like "fantastical" you know this book is a winner! In Ella's words, "Wow! This turned out to be a pretty good book, don't you think?" Yes Ella, I do!
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Format: Hardcover
"Every time you read a book, it's just BEARS BEARS BEARS - horrible furry bears slurping honey in awful little caves." That's how fed up Ella is with bears hogging all the storybooks. She needs a break from all the bears. The obvious solution is to take matters into her own hands and create a storybook that has, you guessed it, no bears. No bears in her castle, no bears in her forest, no bears putting their grimy little paws in her book, period.

Instead of bears crowding up the joint, Ella's book has a tutorial for making your own paper crown, fairies with shimmering wings, a map of faraway places, and a terrible monster. This monster is also terribly (hilariously) dressed, replete in a pair of yellow and coral striped tights and an offbeat patterned mask. Ella's story has action, adventure, and like all good storybooks, a happy ending.

I like how Ella includes classic storybook elements in a seemingly random way. When she introduces the monster to the story, a little girl in a red cape and hood runs past with a basket while a wolf looks on. The monster crosses the river in a bathtub with an owl and a pussycat, later passing by a trio of pigs in one house, and a girl with a suspiciously long braid in another.

There may be no bears allowed in, but one lurks (unknown to the bear banning author) right at the edges of the book, with a paw reaching in on several pages. Could it be that a bear is having a huge effect on Ella's book on the sly?

Leila Rudge does a great job tempering all the colors and activity in Ella's book against the pure white background. There are so many little details to take note of, but it's not the least bit overwhelming. There is action and adventure on every page, paired with adorable little patterned clothing (Ella's pink patterned shirt is my favorite) and clever little jokes tucked in everywhere.
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Format: Hardcover
Summary: No Bears

Ella is writing a book, and she knows what sort of book it will be. Her book will have pretty things, fairies, princesses, castles, funny things, exciting things and scary things but most importantly NO BEARS. After all, "Every time you read a book, it's just BEARS BEARS BEARS - horrible furry bears slurping honey in awful little caves."

Then follows Ella's delightful story including, yes, a princess (Ella who has donned a paper crown for the part), a king and queen (who look rather domestic), a fairy godmother (with pen, paint, and a magic wand) and a "scary" monster but NO Bears. Princess Ella peers into the illustrations of her spiral bound notebook while behind all the action a furry bear watches on (although he nicely refrains from slurping any honey). When the monster decides to kidnap the princess, the bear steps into action attempting to stop the monster on each page. Finally, when all other attempts have failed and the monster has grabbed the princess. The bear uses a quick wave of the fairy godmother's wand to right all wrongs and return the princess to her safe home. Ella's story ends with a bash for the fairy godmother who everyone knows saved Ella (after all there are no bears!). The poor neglected bear is left with a few straggling fairy tale creatures and no verbal credit for a job well done.

Illustrations: No Bears

Leila Rudge's illustrations in No Bears add a complex dimension to the simple storyline. I caught my son peering over the illustrations on his own trying to see every detail. If you are a reader (like me) who gets so excited at the chance to read a new book that you race through it as quickly as possible, slow down and enjoy.
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Format: Hardcover
Ella has written a book. And in case you aren't sure it's a book, you can tell it is by the phrases "once upon a time" and "happily ever after." The most important thing you need to know about her story -- there are no bears in it!

You see, Ella is tired of bears. And she's sure you don't need them for a book. There are other things that are much more important to a story. Things like fairies and princesses, monsters and giants.

She thinks her book turned out pretty well. In fact, she's pretty sure it is the "prettiest, most exciting, scariest, and funniest book ever." You know why? That's right. No bears.

"No Bears" is a whimsical tale within a tale that works perfectly. Even while Ella is telling her tale, a sweet little bear is also making an appearance. And Ella's tale itself is exactly the sort of story children make up every day.

There's a great deal of sophisticated humor throughout the text and illustrations that will appeal to children and charm their parents. It's great fun to see the story play out. And make sure to watch for some familiar fairy tale characters as they round out the party in this visual feast!
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