Not just the eponymous Bear, but many friendly animals are headed somewhere special.
Simple, cumulative text translated from Dutch prompts readers to turn the pages as one anthropomorphic animal after another joins Bear on a walk through the forest. Each animal’s arrival on the scene provides a little more information about whom they are going to see. This pattern begins with Bear saying “I’m going to see some sleepy little eyes!” Squirrel mentions “cute little ears”; Fox, “a little pink nose”; Rabbit, a “teensy-weensy mouth”; Cat, “a soft little belly.” It’s Goat who finally fills in the whole picture: They “are going to see Baby Mouse! He was just born!” Diederen’s digital illustrations show the group growing in size and moving through space from left to right with each subsequent double-page spread until they arrive at the conclusion and gather around Baby Mouse, sound asleep in a bed of straw. There are no mouse parents about, which could prompt questions about who takes care of this new baby, but he’s certainly beloved by the crowd of animal friends. This book is all about celebrating a new baby rather than adjusting to its presence; the boldface cues in the text beg caregivers who are reading with children in their laps to point out each body part as they read and cuddle, offering loving tangible reinforcement to the text.
A sweet welcome for a new baby. (Picture book. 1-3)