Taylor’s (Hoot Owl, Master of Disguise) concise narration is resonant with developmental authenticity and psychological insight, with just enough repetition to lend a pleasing lilt; it’s the emotional heart of this story. Hughes (The Little ) brings it home with instantly endearing characters and fine, fluid pencil texturing that has a marvelous plasticity, whether it’s delineating the bears’ shaggy coats, the bark of a tree, or the swirling waters of the river.
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
This lovely book captures the languid mood of a hot day along with the easy rhythms of a sweet father-child connection…With her small, dense pencil strokes, Hughes (“Wild,” “The Little Gardener”) gives her bears utterly peaceable expressions and long, soft-looking fur that may cause readers to fondly recall the work of Paul Galdone.
—The New York Times Book Review
The brief text and the message that bravery is simply carrying on in spite of failure make this a fine offering for youngsters just trying their wings.
—School Library Journal
Hughes’ detailed pencil illustrations show incredible texture, from the sweeping strokes of the bears’ fur to the gnarled trees and brushy forest. Earthy tones of browns and greens fade into the pulsating yellow and orange sky. There are lessons here to be sure, but it is a warm family story most of all.
The playful cadence of Taylor’s sparing text and the vibrancy of words like “jumpiest!” make this ideal for reading aloud. Whether it’s used for reading or listening, this glowing anecdote is sure to appeal to the overly ambitious Little Bear in each of us.