One ordinary day, a bear knocked on my door.
I politely informed him that bears do not belong in houses.
Then I said, "Go home, bear." And that was that.
But, really, that isn't that in But the Bear Came Back by Tammi Sauer and Dan Taylor. The bear returns with a flamingo. Then, he shows up and the boy who keeps telling the bear to go away pretends not to be home; he even hangs a sign on the door saying, "Nobody is home. Really. Especially if you are a bear." But, that is one persistent bear he's dealing with. The bear comes down through his chimney, making black bear tracks. The unnamed boy in But the Bear Came Back keeps telling him to go away. But, the bear just keeps coming back. He peeks through a window, pushes a book called "You and Your Bear: A Guide" toward the boy, colors with him, and even climbs into a bubble bath with the boy. "Things got a little ridiculous," it says on the page showing the boy crammed into the end of the bubble bath, his toy boat falling out of the tub.
Finally, the little boy shouts, "I SAID GO HOME, BEAR!" and that does the trick. He doesn't come back on Monday. The house is "Bear-less" on Tuesday. On Wednesday, he shouts up the fireplace, "Bear? Are you there?" By Sunday, the boy is missing the bear. He organizes a search party, tacks up posters, sets out a bowl of berries, and waits. Eventually the bear returns and gives the boy a big bear hug. The boy says, "Welcome home, bear."
Highly recommended - A story of an unusual friendship that could be easily seen as an allegory, a way to show that we're not all alike but sometimes it's just nice to have a friend. They don't have to look like us, but when someone reaches out it's nice to respond in kind. Lovely. I'm a fan of Tammi Sauer's books and But the Bear Came Back is a nice new addition to her many wonderful children's stories.
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