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Salina Yoon, Author
Salina Yoon. Walker, $14.99 (40p) ISBN 978-0-8027-3559-1
Reviewed on: 01/27/2014
Release date: 04/01/2014
Library Binding - 40 pages - 978-0-8027-3560-7
Board Books - 32 pages - 978-0-8027-3779-3
Paperback - 33 pages - 978-1-4088-5440-2
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This story will undoubtedly be celebrated for its lessons on honesty and responsibility, but that’s not giving Yoon (Penguin in Love) enough credit: it’s also a thoughtful, flawlessly executed exploration of theory of mind and emotional intelligence. A bear cub finds an abandoned toy stuffed rabbit, which promptly finds its way into his heart (“Bear thought it was the most special thing he had ever seen”). As much as Bear wants to keep the bunny, he also empathizes with the “bunny’s family” (they “must be so worried”) and the cuddly but impassive bunny itself. It’s these feelings, rather than an obligatory or on-high dictate of “right and wrong,” that propel Bear on a comprehensive search for bunny’s owner—an impressive show of competence, thoroughness, and agency that also enables Bear to endure when the owner comes forward. Yoon’s simple, subtly textured shapes; bright colors; and eloquent, economic language invite readers to be part of the story without dictating how they should feel, making the happy ending all the more touching and satisfying. Ages 3–6. Agent: Jamie Weiss Chilton, Andrea Brown Literary Agency. (Apr.)
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