STARRED REVIEW
April 2016

A talented bear strikes a heartfelt note

illustrated by David Litchfield
Review by
We never seem to tire of tales about leaving home and adventuring far from our loved ones. From the bear’s first awkwardly pawed notes, The Bear and the Piano reminds us that, while we may travel, we never lose where we have been.
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We never seem to tire of tales about leaving home and adventuring far from our loved ones. From the bear’s first awkwardly pawed notes, The Bear and the Piano reminds us that, while we may travel, we never lose where we have been.  

Bear’s life would have been typically bear-like, had a piano not appeared in the forest one day. Bear’s music skills grow and grow, taking him all the way to Broadway. In New York City he is an instant celebrity, performing for enthusiastic crowds and meeting new friends. The glow of the city is all he had imagined—until he begins to dream of home. Will Bear return? And what will he find there? 

Populated by kind-faced animals and people, David Litchfield’s illustrations create a welcoming and beautiful world. The soft colors and white swirls that adorn the forest make it seem as though it’s in constant musical movement. Bear is a tranquil protagonist, which lets us easily step into his shoes (or tuxedo) and imagine ourselves onstage. The text is calm and evenly paced, making it perfect for bedtime, as well as for pensive young minds that might ponder the enormity of “someday” decisions. 

The Bear and the Piano starts and ends on the same perfect note.

 

This article was originally published in the April 2016 issue of BookPage. Download the entire issue for the Kindle or Nook.

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The Bear and the Piano

The Bear and the Piano

illustrated by David Litchfield
Clarion
ISBN 9780544674547

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