CM . . .
. Volume XVII Number 3. . . .September 17, 2010
Winter is here, but little bear is not ready to hibernate. For every warning his mother gives him about impending dangers (freezing cold, deep snow, long winter, strong winds etc), he has a retort and a reason why he won’t be scared. He continues to play, regardless of his mother’s cautions, until a frightening snowstorm begins in earnest. Finding himself all alone in a sea of white, little bear rushes anxiously to his mother. Saving face, he tells her, “Mamma, I’m back, winter is very long and you might get lonely.”
The simple storyline with just a few words per page is matched by the minimalist illustrations. The vastness of the landscape is captured through large, double-page spreads depicting the adventurous little bear enjoying the sights and sounds of the impending storm. Each scene is portrayed using a limited number of muted tones that accurately reflect the surroundings and encroaching weather conditions. Despite the brevity of the story and the starkness of the illustrations, the book succeeds in capturing the atmosphere of the harsh winter environment as well as the warmth of the relationship between a mother and her young. The author is obviously familiar with the psychology of young children and their need to test limits while knowing the security of home awaits them if necessary.
Aileen Wortley, a retired librarian, lives in Toronto, ON.
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Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal
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other reproduction is prohibited without permission.
Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.