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THE BRUCE SWAP by Ryan T. Higgins


From the Mother Bruce series

by Ryan T. Higgins ; illustrated by Ryan T. Higgins

Pub Date: May 4th, 2021
ISBN: 978-1-368-02856-1
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion

Bruce the bear is not fun.

He doesn’t like biking fast or making sculptures out of yogurt or dismounting from branches like an Olympic gymnast. And he definitely doesn’t like fun visits from friends and family. Bruce’s family loves Bruce, but they wish he were just a little more fun—that is, until they meet Bruce’s cousin Kevin, who looks just like Bruce (except for Bruce’s trademark scowl) but acts nothing like him. Bruce doesn’t know about Kevin’s visit, so he isn’t home when Kevin arrives. When Kevin shows up and introduces himself to Bruce’s immediate family—which consists of a motley crew of earnest mice and forever-hungry geese—he stages a candy fight, orders 26 pizzas, and turns the house into an indoor pool. When a minibus full of Kevin’s friends pulls up in front of the house, the fun goes a little too far. The mice and geese begin to miss their beloved, unfun bear—and to appreciate the need to be unfun, at least some of the time. The story’s textured, cartoon illustrations employ panels, speech bubbles, and an endearingly drawn cast of woodland characters to build humor into unexpected moments and to give the plot momentum. The dialogue is cheeky and conversational, deftly tucking clever jokes for adults between lines that clearly appeal to children. (This book was reviewed digitally with 9-by-24-inch double-page spreads viewed at 41.7% of actual size.)

A gentle, silly picture book about balancing fun and responsibility.

(Picture book. 3-8)