Friday, November 14, 2014

Here's an old favorite - ready for new readers.

Snow Bear by Jean Craighead George. Illustrated by Wendell Minor. New York: Hyperion Books for children, 1999.  28p.  ISBN 0-7868-0456-4 hc. $15.99  Gr. K-2  E PIC

This story can almost be considered an Arctic version of "Blueberries for Sal."  It takes place on the shores of the Arctic Ocean when Bessie Nivyek decides to explore a huge chunk of ice that looks like a ship.  Bessie meets a baby polar bear cub and the two have a time of carefree play together, while being anxiously watched by both Bessie's brother and the mother polar bear.  The arrival of an enormous male polar bear changes the circumstances, but all ends well.  The illustrations are wintery, yet brilliantly colorful.  As an imaginative story, this is amusing and entertaining but, as a story view into another culture, it is misleading.  It would be an excellent public library book, but a judgment call for a school library.
Kay T. Elzinga, Superiorland Library Cooperative Board Member

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