Review Blog

Apr 22 2020

A bear named Bjorn by Delphine Perret

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Translated by Antony Shugaar. Gecko Press, 2020. ISBN: 9781776572694. eBook available.
(Ages 6 -8). Recommended. A thoughtful, whimsical story that follows the daily adventures of a Bear, Bjorn, who lives quietly in a cave. It is a mixture of animal and human adventures as each of the six chapters reveals another escapade involving the bear and his other animal friends. He wins a sofa and decides to leave it in a part of the forest for everyone to use as it just doesn't really fit into his cave very well. In another chapter his friend the fox helps him to organize a fun carnival where all his friends borrow clothes and wear adornments to celebrate and reflect what they see humans wearing in clothing catalogues. Later he gets his annual check-up with the very popular Owl who checks them thoroughly from top to toe. The chapter called 'Nothing' was weirdly appropriate to illustrate to a young child that it is okay to just sit and appreciate the simple things around us, especially during the restrictions on outdoor entertainment as we self-isolate for Covid 19. It was also interesting to be given an insight into the processes that the bear took to prepare for hibernation in the last chapter.
All these adventures are beautifully illustrated using black line drawings and the book has been published on calming mint-green pages. Best enjoyed by young independent readers or one to one reading at home where the illustrations can be enjoyed along with the story. Themes: Bears, Forests, Friendship.
Gabrielle Anderson

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