Kirkus Reviews QR Code
OLD BEAR by Kevin Henkes


by Kevin Henkes & illustrated by Kevin Henkes

Age Range: 2 - 6

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2008
ISBN: 978-0-06-155205-2
Publisher: Greenwillow

When Old Bear sleeps, he dreams of being a cub and of the changing seasons. When he wakens and steps out into the soft pastels of Henkes’s spring, he does not feel the passage of time, and in expression and carriage he exudes youthfulness. Many careful choices are made in a book that only seems uncomplicated. As bears go, smiling Old Bear looks as friendly as the teddies children cherish. His benign but shaggy appearance will invite them to learn many concepts, in the gentlest and most implicit way: youth and age, hibernation and renewal, the passage of seasons. Watercolor-and-ink paintings are bright but delicately hued. Bear’s bold outline changes with the palette of each season. His fanciful dreams, as well as the spring “reveal,” are full bleed, double-page spreads while other illustrations are neatly framed, emphasizing the ursine bulk. Confident, harmonious and sweet. (Picture book. 2-6)