ALBERT THE BEAR by Nick Butterworth


by & illustrated by
Age Range: 5 - 7
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In this brief, clever cautionary take on the dangers of judging by appearances, the arrival of a very downcast-looking bear in a toy shop prompts the other toys to put together a show, in an effort to cheer him up. Several acts go embarrassingly awry, however, before Albert can explain that he’s not really sad, just constructed that way—an assertion that he backs up with a booming, infectious laugh after tutu-clad Sally the hippo falls over him, leaving his face smeared with lipstick. Butterworth depicts Albert as a big, plush, eminently huggable polar bear (secondary rights, anyone?—a paper nametag is attached to his ear on the cover), and rewards observant, culturally literate readers with guest appearances on the toy shelves by the likes of Paddington, Kipper, Elmer, Bob the Builder, Raymond Briggs’s Snowman and several other familiar characters. A child-friendly outing, as usual, and the product placement comes off more as a shared joke than a commercial ploy. (Picture book. 5-7)

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2003
ISBN: 0-06-053688-8
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: HarperCollins
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1st, 2003


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