KIRSTI AND THE BEAR by Roberta Elliott


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When Kirsti overhears her grandparents complaining that she is spending too much time with animals instead of other people, and discussing the possibilities of sending her to school, she drives away from her Finnish home to the Lap woods with the family sledge and reindeer. The grandparents' worries seem to be well founded: not only does Kirsti talk to animals, they speak in reply. Readers with the imagination to accept this, will find little in the lengthy conversations between Kirsti and the bear, the reindeer, the fox, and the skylarks, all of whom have rather peevish personalities. It seems surprising that they should choose Kirsti to speak to, since she is quite imperious toward them. After impinging on the hospitality of the bear for a couple of days, Kirsti suddenly decides to become homesick. Although she seems to have proved her rapport with the wildlife, on her return home she concludes that it's really people she depends on. Fantasy has been intended, but seems illogical rather than imaginative.

Pub Date: April 1st, 1965
Publisher: Harcourt, Brace & World