Newest Review: ... who introduces the reader into a number of bears. The aim being to find your bear. Each bear is not your bear for a number of reasons ... more
disappointing example of popular series
That's Not My Bear - Fiona Watt
Member Name: ariom
That's Not My Bear - Fiona Watt
Advantages: repetition, bold illustrations
Disadvantages: some textures inappropriate for the target age range
I met my husand through internet dating and his slogan was "please look after this bear" so he has long been bear and I have been bearess, so when Bryn came along it made sense that he is little bear. So this book looked ideal when I wanted to get a book for him when shopping from Amazon.
The "That's not my.." is a series of books all with a familiar format and also contains many other books including animals (horse, dog), machinery (tractor, train) and fantasy (fairy, dragon).
The book contains repetition which an older child can join in with of "that's not my bear" on every double page as well as the cover. The reasons that it isn't their bear links to vocabulary that 4 year olds would use in early science - rough, shiny, soft as well as some good adverbs - fuzzy, fluffy. There is a variety of bears which can be discussed - white (polar) bears, brown bears, panda bears. The panda bears are featured with bamboo while the brown bears are featured near wood - offering a discussion of food/habitat if the mood takes you. Though he doesn't understand it yet, I do point out the bamboo when we've had chinese food when we read this book the day after. Each double page also has a little white mouse on which could turn into a game to find. The illustrations are bold with a dark black outline to make them easy to perceive.
The book has thick cardboard pages which don't bend easily and are easy for young hands to use. The cover is larger and thicker than the rest of the book, making it easy to identify it and also to hold. The textures are all sunken, which can make them a bit hard for little hands to find, but does mean they are more likely to stay in place and the book can be shut flat. The fuzzy texture is good - a large size easy for small hands to find. The soft and rough and scratchy textures are moderate sized, but the shiny textured bit (claws) is far too small to be easy for small hands to reach and find it. The scratchy texture is made from velcro which I do worry is a bit too scratchy for very young hands to be exposed to. The fluffy texture at the end has moulted since we got this book (and was doing so on arrival), since the book is targeted at babies and toddlers - an age keen to explore everything with their mouths this worries me. Even after repeated attempts, more still seems to come off if I stroke my hand over the texture. As he gets older, I would be unwilling to leave my son unattended with this as a result.
Overall, it's a lovely idea and a nice book, but if I had seen it in the flesh, I wouldn't have ordered it due to the issues with textures.
RRP is £5.99. I got it for £2.49 from Amazon. These books are widely available from Amazon, Early Learning Centres, WH Smith, Waterstones etc.
Summary: let down by some of the textures