A handy story for little adventurers curious about the outdoor world.
In this British import, Robinson breaks the wall between book and audience to advise readers about the precautions needed when exploring country life. Laid out as a blend of a field journal and pictorial narrative, the story presents the young main character, ready for an adventurous walk in the woods. As the backpack-toting, balaclava- and plaid-jacket–clad child strides confidently into the forest, the text suggests to readers, “You’d better make sure you know your bears.” A turn of the page reveals field-note illustrations, scientific names, and descriptions of black and brown bears. When the protagonist finally encounters not one, but two bears, readers will realize that it takes more than a guidebook to face your fears—and not everything is as dangerous as it might seem. With autumnal colors, Roberts guides readers’ eyes toward detailed and minimalistic illustrations of flora, fauna, and fungi characteristic of the deep woods. The freckle-faced child has dark skin and is of indeterminate gender. Graph-paper backgrounds, different fonts, and the silliness of the main character make this a quirky, appealing title.
Be sure to snuggle up to “the stuffed kind” of bears and share this book with future Scaredy Squirrel series fans. (Picture book. 5-7)