Nothing Can Frighten A Bear (Elizabeth Dale)

Hello, friends! Our book today is Nothing Can Frighten A Bear, written by Elizabeth Dale and illustrated by Paula Metcalf, a fun-filled modern fairytale about a bear family dealing with a few nighttime scares.

Snuggled into their cave in the woods, the Bear family – Mama, Daddy, Grace, Ben, and Baby – are awakened when Baby is startled from sleep by a mysterious roar. Insisting that he won’t be able to sleep until the source of the noise is identified, the bears head out on an expedition to help Baby face his fears. Various noises greet them but are easily explained away (a crow, a deer, a frog, etc.), all while Daddy Bear cheerfully proclaims that nothing can frighten a bear. But neither he nor Baby have noticed that the other family members are being left behind, caught up in various sticky yet non-threatening situations. And when the two realize they are alone, and more mysterious noises are headed their way, even Daddy Bear begins to feel a little nervous. Especially of those strange shadows approaching from the woods…

Wonderfully amusing fun. I don’t want to give away the ending because it’s delightful, but I promise that there is nothing even vaguely scary about this book; the bears are never in danger, and their fear is played for some really enjoyable laughs. The layout of the story is wonderful for encouraging the involvement of little readers, with easily identifiable animals and rhymes that they can join with their adult in reading aloud, and filled with bouncy text that is easy and fun to read. The illustrations are absolutely adorable and filled with lovely details, the length is great, and JJ loved it. A fantastic story about facing the fear of what goes bump in the night, and it’s Baby Bookworm approved!

Little Elliot, Big Fun (Mike Curato)

Hello, friends! Our review today is Little Elliot, Big Fun by Mike Curato, the third book in the wonderful Little Elliot series. 

This time around, Elliot and his very best friend, Mouse, are on their way to the boardwalk for a fun-filled day at the carnival. Once they arrive, however, Little Elliot’s day begins to take a bad turn: many of the rides are too scary for him, a seagull eats his ice cream, and he gets so scared by a clown that he runs off in a panic. Mouse finds him hiding under the boardwalk, and persuades him to try one more ride before giving up. Is Little Elliot brave enough to trust his friend?

This is our third Little Elliot book, and each one has been more gorgeous and delightful than the last. Once again, Curato mixes adorably sweet little characters with some genuinely gorgeous art to create a story and a world that is both grand and sweeping yet sweet and intimate. The message of the story is great as well, encouraging readers not to give up if things aren’t going their way, and to be courageous enough to face their fears. Most importantly, it’s a story about friendship and family, and how even a bad day can still be special if you’re with the right person. The length is great, and JJ and I both loved it. A beautiful tale in both visuals and story, and it’s Baby Bookworm approved!

What Do You Do With A Problem? (Kobi Yamada)

Hello friends! Sorry for the late update, but here we are with another lovely book: What Do You Do With A Problem? written by Kobi Yamada and illustrated by Mae Besom.

A boy finds that he has a problem. His problem follows him like a dark cloud wherever goes: he cannot hide from it or disguise himself from it, and the more he ignores it, the bigger it gets. He is scared of it, but then he looks within his problem and finds something bright and golden: an opportunity. 

This was a very interesting book, speaking especially as someone who has an anxiety disorder. The dark cloud that represented the boy’s problem, the way it grew and became an untamable storm definitely spoke to me. I think I probably liked this book more than JJ: while I loved the subtle and intricately detailed pencil art, JJ was not as focused as she typically is. While I loved the metaphor of the story, it probably flew over a one-year-old’s head. I would say that this book may not be great for baby bookworms like JJ, but would probably be great for older kids who could understand the symbolism and message better. However, JJ sat through the story and seemed to mostly enjoy it, so I’m still calling this one Baby Bookworm approved!