cover image Bear’s Scare

Bear’s Scare

Jacob Grant. Bloomsbury, $16.99 (32p) ISBN 978-1-68119-720-3

Bear, a plodding, conscientious creature, takes pleasure in the certainty that his house is tidy, and lavishes attention on his stuffed toy Ursa: “They were always together.” But then (horrors!) he discovers spiderwebs in his house, and he sets to work trying to find the spider and get rid of it. “I am certainly sure the spider is nothing like us,” he sniffs. Grant (Through with the Zoo) quickly delivers the message that Bear’s the one with the problem as he depicts the friendly-looking arachnid knitting an afghan and painting on a small easel; it’s clear that, despite the webs, she’s a fine housemate. However, Bear’s search is so hurried and careless that he rips Ursa’s arm loose. He can’t mend it, but someone else—someone with eight legs and lots of creativity—can. Working in a serene palette of pink and lavender, Grant gets comic mileage from Bear’s wide-eyed, stricken-looking expression; a view of the bear’s big rump as he searches under the bed will make readers smile. Insisting that everyone look and act just as we do, this story suggests, blinds us to some pretty wonderful possibilities. Ages 3–6. [em]Agent: Steven Chudney, Chudney Agency. (June) [/em]