TRUST REBA by Joseph Low


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Reba is a bear who comes to live with an unnamed family in an unspecified forest, and she proves so helpful and reliable that ""trust Reba"" becomes a familiar expression. When the humans go off one day for the baby's christening, Reba is bidden, half in jest, to guard the festive table; taking her duty seriously she swats at a fly, tips over the wine bottle, and is expelled in disgrace on the family's return. Because the tablecloth is such a mess they take their feast outside and find that not only is there enough wine left in the bottle but the food tastes even better soaked in it (""like you never had it so good.""). Thus when they find the remorseful Reba washing the tablecloth ""they led her to the picnic and began to stuff her with goodies,"" even giving her the baby to hold as proof of their trust. In keeping with Low's style of illustration, which has the same breezy and folksy quality whether the folk are English, American, Italian or Chinese, the story's ethnic setting is vague if not confused; presumably, bear lovers will sympathize with fat faithful Reba without caring where she comes from. Marginal.

Pub Date: Aug. 5th, 1974
Publisher: McGraw-Hill