Mimi and her stuffed animal Bear make a new friend at the playground in this follow-up to Mimi and Bear in the Snow (2014).
Anthropomorphic brown bunny “Mimi was the best at everything” at the playground. Illustrations show her besting Bear as she climbs higher on the jungle gym, digs for treasure in the sand, swoops down the slide, and swings on the swing. Since Bear is clearly inanimate, this leads to some visual chuckles, as the blue stuffed toy slumps over a bar on the jungle gym and sits with sand on its head next to the sandbox. It also helps to be “best” when there’s nobody else besides your stuffed toy to compete with. Lo and behold, a newcomer squirrel arrives and climbs higher, finds better treasure, and swoops faster. Feeling discouraged, Mimi at first doesn’t notice that the squirrel is struggling while swinging up high on the swing. When the newcomer falls, she offers comfort with Bear, proving that even if she is “not…the best at everything…she was definitely a good friend.” As in this book’s predecessor, the softly colored, rounded, cartoon-style illustrations seem like they’d be a good fit for animation, and they match the gentle tone of the text throughout this quiet story.
A friendly sort of read. (Picture book. 2-5)