Bear and brother, introduced in How to Share with a Bear (2015), are back.
Well, brother Thomas is anyway. His brother, the bear, is too busy hibernating to help build a snow critter. Thomas shakes the bear, serenades the bear, and tries to bribe the bear. Finally, a few freshly baked cookies do the trick. Once vertical, the bear gets dressed for the trek outdoors. The two brothers assemble a cookie-eared snow bear, go sledding, dig out a snow cave, and go home to share a cuddle and a book. In spite of all the togetherness, Pinder's light touch is missing in this sequel. The myriad activities deflect the focus from the deep caring evident between the bear and his older brother. Dwelling on the bear hibernating or the brothers hangin’ with the snow bear would have given space for that intimacy. Also, the sound effects accompanying the boys’ meanderings have increased to the point where they impede rather than enhance the narrative flow. Graegin’s choice of muted colors infuses the story with an overall intimate and comfy feel. The soft browns of the characters’ faces, bear suit, and house interior reflect the warmth permeating the brothers’ loving interactions.
A pleasant choice for a cozy read though not quite as sweet as the characters’ first outing. (Picture book. 2-6)