The Polar Bear Reviews

UPDATE TIME: 2018-07-03 
Review Score: 5 out of 5 star From 20 user ratings

" Lovely book for children who are interested in nature and animals. Beautiful illustrations. Lends itself to reading and discussing with a child. " said.

" Beautiful illustrations, lovely. I like the inventive way that this non fiction book is a dream for the little reader. A little meta with her inside the book and pages, but I think it's a great way to engage little readers and relate the information. " said.

" Beautiful illustrations, thick pages, and informative while remaining storylike in tone. My 5- and 2 1/2-year-olds enjoyed it, interrupting every now and again to ask follow-up questions (a sign that, even with a higher word count than usual, they were engaged). This is a lovely book for kids that are used to picture books and parents who want to start reading nonfiction with them. " said.

" When I first saw this, I was reminded of the Bear Report by Heder. It's longer and contains less fantasy and a ton of facts. I think students would love to read both books. In Desmond's Polar Bear, she compared bears to 7 year olds. I think it would be fun to group 20 first graders and say, "yup, there's a bear!" But I think the book would have to be broken up into a few days. It's a long read aloud, but a great resource for collecting facts about polar bears. " said.

" This is a nonfiction book, but it's set within the small story of a little girl reading a book about polar bears. The information contained in the book about polar bears is great, but what really sets this book apart are the illustrations. They're simply gorgeous, and every now and then the little girl reading the book about polar bears shows up in the illustrations, as if she's entered the world of the book she's reading. It takes what could be a dry nonfiction book to a sublime place. " said.

"Jenni Desmond certainly has a great flair for presenting factual information in an easy flowing style with beautiful illustrations such as a picture book has. I love the technique of showing the child reaching for a book to learn about a particular animal, in this case the polar bear. I did indeed learn many facts about polar bears. . .they have an extra layer in their eyes that functions like sunglasses; they need to eat a minimum of about 40 ringed seals per year and can go eleven days without eating; the water they consume comes from the seals as the ocean water is too salty for them to drink. Polar bears mate in the spring, but don't actually become pregnant till the end of summer if they have enough weight to support the pregnancy. Fascinating information in a beautiful book." said.

"The illustrations are almost like photographs; the dust jacket says that Jenni Desmond created them "using watercolor, acrylic, pencil, crayons, and the printmaking techniques of carborundum and drypoint." All I can say is that they are realistic and stunning. The book itself is not fiction, but there is a little genre-blending because a little girl who is reading about polar bears ends up following the bears through "their" story - i.e., this book, so we see her in various illustrations, reading about or fishing, sledding, and snuggling with the bears. Lots of facts that will be fascinating to a young audience; for example, I didn't know that a cub is the size of a guinea pig when it's born, or that polar bears are fussy about cleanliness and "wash" in snow and ice after feeding. Lovely & informative writing and illustrating on the part of Ms. Desmond, a Maurice Sendak Fellow in 2016. This book was on the New York Times Best Illustrated Children's Book list for 2016." said.

"The Polar Bear, by Jenni Desmond, is a nicely produced book, but slightly odd. The majority of the book is reference material, citing interesting facts about the polar bear, but there are a few sentences about a little girl who likes polar bears at the very beginning and the very end that frame all those details. Combined with all that well-researched info, are some fantastic illustrations of polar bears, some of which include images of the little girl, dressed in her fur collared coat and crown. (Someone from PETA needs to instruct her about the inclusion of fur in our garments.) It's actually somewhat fun to see where the little girl might turn up. Near the middle is a delightful illustration of many, many children, including the little girl, enjoying polar bears in books, as stuffed animals, or perhaps as an image on their hats or sweaters. Despite being an enjoyable book, this rather feels like two ideas sandwiched between the covers - best suited for a classroom's reading shelf or a school library, rather than among a child's bookcase of favorites." said.

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