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by Kathy Duval & illustrated by Paul Meisel

Age Range: 2 - 6

Pub Date: Sept. 15th, 2005
ISBN: 0-8234-1871-5
Publisher: Holiday House

It’s Christmas Eve at the house of the Three Bears in their little cabin in the woods. They go out for a walk so their gingerbread bears can cool, and on their return—surprise! Someone has nibbled the gingerbread, sat in the chairs (breaking Baby Bear’s) and rumpled all the beds, leaving items of red clothing scattered behind. But this time there is no one asleep in Baby Bear’s bed, because as the bears make their discoveries, the intruder has been busy stuffing their stockings and leaving presents under their tree (including a new chair for Baby Bear). The bears run outside just in time to see Santa flying off in his sleigh in his long undies, and readers will have to hope that Santa keeps an extra outfit in the back of the sleigh. The text follows the structure of the traditional story with plenty of clues so that preschoolers can figure out who the bears’ uninvited guest might be. Meisel’s paintings use simple shapes and bright, holiday colors with a folk-art flair, especially in the outdoor scenes with deep-blue skies and snowy trees. Preschool teachers will want to add this holiday version of “The Three Bears” to their repertoire of “just-right” tales for holiday story times. (Picture book. 2-6)