Newson, Karl. Bear Is a Bear (Except When He’s Not), A. Anuska Allepuz, Illus. Picture Book. Nosy Crow, 08/2020. pp. $16.99. 978-1-5362-1202-0. OUTSTANDING. GRADES PRE-2.
A bear imagines he is various different animals in this rhyming story with alliteration and the repeated phrase, “For a bear is a bear. Except when he’s not…What would he be if a bear forgot?” The storytime listeners can call out the repeated phrase as well as guess what animal the bear is imitating, including a bird, moose, fox, and squirrel. The narrative has a cumulative quality, making this an ideal read-aloud; it also mentions hibernation. Colorful mixed-media illustrations feature unusual colors in the forest including purple bushes and turquoise trees. Originally published in the U.K. in 2018. Review based on an ARC.
Penny Peck, San Jose State University iSchool