Book review: A Christmas for Bear, by Bonny Becker, illustrated by Kady MacDonald Denton

Becker, Bonny. A Christmas for Bear. Illustrated by Kady MacDonald Denton. Candlewick Press, 2017. Unpaged. ISBN 9780763649234. Ages 5-9. P8Q7

I loved this story about Bear, who wants to have a Christmas party but isn’t exactly sure how to go about it, and Mouse, who really wants a Christmas present. Bear is pretty sure that you have to have pickles at Christmas, and long, difficult poems. Mouse scurries around the house looking for his present, which must be hidden somewhere! After Mouse eats some of his pickle, and listens to part of the poem, we discover that there is indeed a present for him. I love the humorous illustrations (in watercolor, gouache, and ink) and the descriptive language, as well as the warm story about friendship.  I will be happy to add this book to our collection of Christmas stories for children.

VERDICT: This book is a good bet for elementary school and public libraries.

December 2017 review by Carol Schramm.

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