Making a simple picture book that appeals to and satisfies young readers is far, far harder than most people think. Simplicity is the result of refinement and a keen understanding of the medium.
Here is a perfectly paced book that is a pleasure to read aloud and share between parent and child.
Writer Nicola Connelly and illustrator Annie White achieve all of these goals with My Dad is a Bear, which celebrates the bond between a child and their father. A dad is like a bear in so many ways from how big and round he is, to his love of fishing, and even for sleeping.
The text benefits from a pattern of repetition and clever variation while always exploring the central idea.
The warm, soft textures of White's illustrations convey a sense of comfort and ease. What bears and dads do best of course is give bear hugs, and parents and children will delight in reading and rereading this picture book. The simple pleasures of My Dad is a Bear are a pure delight.