Review: The Bear and the Little Green Thing

Author: Diandian
Illustrator: Diandian
Publisher: Berbay Books
Ages: 4-8

Short-listed for the World Illustration Awards, The Bear and the Little Green Thing is a soft spoken allegory of life’s truest, briefest and longest friendships–all encapsulated in one. Its gentle, dark, mysterious illustrations, together with it’s simple text, lead readers on an emotional journey through a friendship that was never really meant to last forever.

Sounds heavy for a kid’s picturebook, right? It’s not. A bird drops a seed on a mountain. The mountain turns out to be a bear’s back. The seed grows into a sapling.

As the seasons change, the sapling provides conversation, company and even protection to the bear in exchange for warmth and safety. When it’s time for the sapling to move on, and put down some proverbial roots, will the friendship survive? Will it grow? Will it morph into something different?

As a good picturebook should, the story is told on many levels. Adults will remember past friendships that took them through difficult times (and may even pick up the phone to call a loved one–do people still call?); kids, with some guidance, will understand that sometimes people grow apart, out of necessity–or simply circumstance. Many, may see other friendship themes in the book as it is ripe for exploration.

While some online sources have listed suitability for children aged as early as two years old, I would push this book to the four to eight-year-old cohort. There is nothing inherently wrong with reading this book to a two year old; however, greater impact can be had at the later years.

The Bear and the Little Green Thing (Amazon)*
The Bear and the Little Green Thing (Support an Independent Bookstore)*

My thanks to Bearbay Books for providing a Review Copy of this book. All opinions provided herein are my own.

More books for this Age Group can be found here.

Please, leave comments! I love a HEALTHY exchange of ideas. After all, critical thinking is essential to life.

*When something is purchased using one of our affiliate links, we may earn a small commission. We do not accept any monies for any editorial reviews. Our opinions, to the chagrin of many, are our own.

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