Don’t Worry Bear, by Greg Foley
This is the second book following the less-than-originally-named Bear, and like the first book, Thank You Bear, is a simple book in words and illustration. When Caterpillar makes a cocoon, Bear worries about him. Caterpillar reassures Bear that he isn’t bothered by the wind or rain or snow. Snow? Well, whatever. In the end, Bear finds the empty cocoon and worries a lot, but finds that Caterpillar has turned into a silk moth. I have to wonder why Caterpillar didn’t just explain the situation to Bear. It seems like it would have helped Bear not worry so much. No matter; cute book and — hello! — cute author/illustrator. This is one of the few picture books I’ve seen with the author’s picture in the back — and one of still fewer where said photo’s inclusion was such a bonus. Where’s Fuse#8’s Hot Men of Children’s Literature when you need it?
Bear’s Picture, written by Daniel Pinkwater, illustrated by D.B. Johnson
Alert: WAPB illustration contender. Bear paints a picture and is enjoying himself, just as two proper gentlemen come by and try to ruin it for him. They insist that bears can’t paint pictures — and besides, nobody can tell what the picture is supposed to be. But bear can tell, and he is happy with himself and his art. This is like a self-help book in picture book form. There’s even a possible psychological element when you see the two men step into the colorful picture and get... well, drowned in the stream. Could the two men represent the our own inner critics? Read the book and you be the judge. Interesting book with an odd note to it.
Dog and Bear: Two’s Company, by Laura Vaccaro Seegar
I loved the first Dog and Bear book. A toy bear and a wiener dog has got to be the best pairing since Sonny and Cher (Justin and Britney? Mary Kate and Ashley?). This book contains three mini-stories of Dog and Bear’s days together. In one tale, Dog is mad and going to run away. Oh, but is that ice cream? In the next story it’s Bear’s birthday, and Dog can’t quite resist the cake he baked. In the third story, Bear helps Dog gets to sleep and gets worn out himself. They are all cute stories, and will be enjoyed with or without knowing the first book. Keep ’em coming, Seeger.