Monday, January 07, 2008

Bear Wants More

Bear Wants More
written by Karma Wilson,
illustrated by Jane Chapman
suggested age: 3-6 years

I was looking for Bear Snores On a few months back and came upon Bear Wants More and instantly liked it.

Bear Wants More is a charming book about a bear who is coming out of hibernation in spring, and how his woodland friends help sate his enormous hunger.
When springtime comes,
in his warm winter den
a bear wakes up
very hungry and thin.

First, Bear munches on the grass outside his cave but he is still hungry. And just then A mouse scampers by with his acorn pail and says follow me along to the strawberry vale.
So up Mouse hops
onto Bear's big back.
They tromp through the woods
for a fresh fruit snack.

Bear eats and he eats, but he still wants more. And so, each of his friends try to lead him to various food sources - the clover patch, stream to catch fish - and Bear heartily partakes, but he still wants more.

The catchy refrain "Bear Wants More" is repeated often and was a delight to shout out together with Ana.

Unbeknownst to him, his other friends (Gopher, Mole, Raven, and Wren), sensing his ravenous appetite when he comes out of hibernation, arrange for a surprise party at Bear's cave replete with honey cakes while he is being led to various food sources by Mouse, Hare and Badger first.

The aroma of freshly baked honey cakes draws Bear to his cave where, to his dismay, he finds he has already gotten too big to fit in his front door! This was Ana's favorite part for some reason - to discover that Bear was too big to fit in his own cave that he walked out of not too long ago. How much could he have eaten in such a short time?!
His friends yell "SURPRISE!"
when he gets to his den.
But Bear is SO big...

...that he can't fit in!

So what do they do? The resourceful friends move the party outside and the bear eats his fill and is finally full, full full, but.. his friends want more!

The full page artwork by Jane Chapman in vibrant greens indicating the crisp and refreshing beauty of spring, with eye-catching detail and endearing woodland animals, was a visual treat in itself. And combined with the bouncy rhymes and gentle story about friendship, hibernation and various food sources, made this a quick favorite with us.

Bear Wants More is a charming read-aloud book with simple and catchy rhymes packed with descriptive words and adorable characters. The gorgeous illustrations complement the text beautifully while unfolding the lives of the woodland creatures in an imaginative and uncomplicated way.


Tharini said...

I was immediately drawn to read this review on looking at that amazing pictture on the front of the book. It is soooo... captivating! Sounds like fun.

Praba Ram said...

Oh Sheela - love your rhyme and meter recommendations - and a bear as the main character - wow!

You should tell us how you go about selecting your bear stories, and also the benefits of reading rhyme and meter to toddlers and preschoolers.

We read Apple Bear, Orange Pear, and are definitely picking up this fun bear story to read! :-)

ps: for my own reading, am such a sucker for verses (sorry about the usage - agreed that's not poetry :-))- currently reading The Golden Gate by Vikram Seth)

Sheela said...

funny anecdote: when i first read this, i thought this is odd: bears normally eat their fill, get huge, find a den and hibernate; so, he must've fit in when he went in the cave first... so, why doesn't he fit in after he eats his first round of meal in spring, right out of hibernation?!

i know... it is a children's book, and it doesn't have to explain everything, and maybe the cave/den's configuration changed in winter making it smaller...

i simply love the book thoug, i must admit!

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