Picturebooks depend on the interplay between text and images: that's what makes them a picturebook, rather than simply an illustrated story.
John Klassen's super-simple title is a perfect example of a true picturebook: obvious text and design clues reveal that somebody in the book (two somebodies, actually) are lying.
Preschoolers, with their keen sense of justice, will be thrilled when they figure out who stole bear's hat, and will be even happier when the thief gets his comeuppance.
Bear and the other forest animals are drawn with stylized watercolours. The images are so simple that Bear (and others) show no expressions: readers must infer their emotional state from the one or two lines of text on the page. This results in some hilariously deadpan scenes where readers are in the enviable position of knowing whodunnit, while Bear is calmly oblivious.
Best for ages four to six, and most highly recommended for parents!
Click here to check out the Port Moody Public Library's catalogue.
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5 years ago