Stripe and the Merbear

Dorothy W. Decker, Author Dillon Press $10.95 (39p) ISBN 978-0-87518-329-9
Stripe the bear and his elderly friend Gilbert go shell collecting. Gilbert tells Stripe of a Merbear: half-bear, half-fish. Stripe puts on his diving gear and begins his quest for the creature. He asks a crab, a seahorse, a lobster and an eel if they have seen the Merbear, but no one can help him. Wearily, the bear rides a dolphin back to his boat. After lunch, Stripe's search continues, with no results. Then an octopus captures Stripe and the Merbear saves him. The reason the other sea animals hadn't told Stripe how to find her was because her existence is a secret. Stripe asks if he can at least tell Gilbert, and the Merbear agrees, making him a gift of a seashell necklace. Back on shore, Gilbert is happy to see Stripe. Their friendship, seen in only two or three frames, is unaffectedly sweet; Stripe's determination to find the Merbear is childlike and appealing. Vivid watercolors give readers a peak at the Merbear long before Stripe sees her and portray, realistically, the creatures of the deep. (4-8)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1986
Release date: 01/01/1986
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