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The Bear's Song Hardcover – September 17, 2013

33 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

K-Gr 2–In this engaging, oversize picture book, Papa Bear is just settling down for winter when he realizes that Little Bear has run off. The cub is chasing a bee, first through the forest and then through a French metropolis. Papa Bear searches everywhere, finally catching sight of his son on the steps of the Opera House. But inside, now where did he go? Young readers will enjoy figuring out the answer as they search page by page for Little Bear and the bee. Each large spread features a scene filled with dozens of figures, many of which serve as decoys for Little Bear. What makes the watercolor and line illustrations even more fun are the humorous details, such as the two woodcutters who have scurried up a tree as Papa Bear runs past them in the forest. With its rich colors, heavy paper, and cosmopolitan locale, this is more than a seek-and-find book, and the story has a very sweet ending involving honey and Papa Bear's song. A pleasing choice for kids who just can't get enough Waldo, and even those who can.–Teri Markson, Los Angeles Public Libraryα(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

From Booklist

*Starred Review* This visual treat of a book follows Papa Bear and Little Bear on an adventure from the countryside to a bustling city. Papa Bear is hibernating in the forest, toes up and round belly on full display. Little Bear, however, is too caught up in honey thoughts to worry about winter approaching, and a sort of buzzing beckons him out of the forest. He’s hot on the heels of a bee. Call it intuition, but Papa Bear wakes suddenly wondering where his little cub has scampered off to and he sets off at a trot through the forest. This is the premise, and it’s simple enough, right? But no—French author and illustrator Chaud wends us through intricate scenes, first populated with all kinds of animals and trees, then cityscapes filled with people, so bustling and charmingly detailed that the eye, happily, doesn’t know where to land first. It’s Where’s Waldo?, Little Bear–style. Chaud, however, knows when to pause for effect, as during Papa Bear’s rousing solo at the Opera House, where Little Bear has arrived. The pictures really do tell the story here; the words seem almost unnecessary. With a distinctive art style, large vertical trim size, and expressive characters—from bear to opera-goer—this is a book not to be missed. Encore! Preschool-Kindergarten. --Ann Kelley

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 3 - 5 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - Kindergarten
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Chronicle Books (September 17, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1452114242
  • ISBN-13: 978-1452114248
  • Product Dimensions: 9.8 x 0.5 x 14.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #143,226 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on November 16, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
Great illustrations, kept our eyes entertained . A fun story!
My kids loved the voices I made up for the characters.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By awayman on October 27, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
My 2.5 year old really gets into this book. He enjoys looking for where little bear has ran. Also just all the other animals and happenings on every page. The size of this book was a surprise. Its easily the tallest book in his collection.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By H. Peck on November 13, 2013
Format: Hardcover
We got this from the library and the kids loved it so much we ended up getting it. The kids (2 and 4) love finding the baby bear and bee and papa bear on each page. The pictures have a lot of action in them without being busy and over stimulating. It's a big hit here.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Liz on October 12, 2013
Format: Hardcover
The illustrations are beautiful, the story is simple yet clever, and my two year old loves it. My thought when reading this the first time was, this will be one to pass on to the grandchildren. Perfect!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By jh on April 14, 2015
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is hands down my favorite recent kids book. It's a little like Where's Waldo for slightly younger kids. The illustrations are lots of fun, and there is lots of subtle humor. Both of my kids (3 1/2, 2) want it read multiple times a day, and for once, I don't mind
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Director/Head Teacher on January 1, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
What fun I had showing this book to adults AND children! Everyone was charmed, from one end paper to the other. Illustrations are unique and detailed, enthralling at many levels.
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Format: Hardcover
As winter sets in, Papa Bear is all set for hibernation, but his son’s wandered off, and from there Papa Bear’s journey to find him is a quest filled with sights and sounds...

Benjamin Chaud’s illustrations have this classic yet modern look to them that would just at home amongst the early works of Richard Scary and Bernard Waber as they would on the cover of a “The New Yorker” today.

It’s a quality many of my favorite illustrators such as Gus Gordon and Zachariah ‘OHara share, but Benjamin’s use of shadow and light, and Monet-esque tone sets it apart from the hyper-technicolor palate common in kidlit.

The text, while concise, is a less spare and a refreshing change of pace from the “minimalist” era in picture books today. Moments of lighthearted humor flows well with the gorgeous spreads throughout the book.

“The Bear’s Song” is partly a father and son story, with accentts of “Where’s Waldo?” and the charm of “Guess How Much I Love You?” but with the subtle and sophisticated art style that would make it a unique cofee table book as well as a great read-aloud.

Reversion Of The Original Review at TalkingAnimalAddicts.com
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By Ryan Murphy on February 10, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The story in this book is simple but solid. A little bear runs away, and his father has to find him. The art is absolutely beautiful, my favorite of any children's book. Its amazing how much personality and emotion the illustrator can bring to each of hundreds of background characters in the book, using only a few tiny strokes. There's also a nice Where's Waldo element to finding the baby bear on each page. The book has huge re-readability because of the extensive details drawn into every scene. Sure to be a Caldecott contender this year!
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