Two middle school students came to the library this morning to tell me that we have not spent enough time appreciating the Bear books by Greg Foley. Bear is the star of Foley’s picture books for very young children – and obviously, children who are a bit older. The series includes: Thank You Bear, Don’t Worry Bear and Good Luck Bear. Foley’s books are in the library, and while I’ve certainly read them and noted how adorable Bear is, the middle school students are correct. If you can get to a library or bookstore and flip through one of the Bear books, go ahead. I’ll wait here.
Okay. The girls are right, aren’t they? As one of them said, some of the pictures are so sweet you want to cry. Thank You Bear, the book that started our reappraisal of the series, is the story of a bear who finds a box – a very tiny box. He shows it to a few of his animal friends who clearly don’t share his enthusiasm. Bear is upset. Who wouldn’t be? But then he meets a friend who appreciates his treasure. One of the best parts of this book is the dedication: “For anyone who ever thought they had something great.” If you want to share something great with a child – either a 3-year-old or a thirteen-year-old, check out the Bear books.