The tale starts with a bird. A bird who wants to make friends, but is too shy to do so. As he watches a bear play with his silent friend balloon, bird wants all the more to join in. Then, the little thing gets his chance when the wind lifts the red balloon away. Bird never does find the courage to "make" a friend, but he becomes friends through circumstance. Shy children will understand and relate to this. Words are hard. Because of this, words are appropriately kept to a minimal. The tone is established by the creator's use of white space, and a few pages which are filled with colour. Bird, bear, and the red balloon pop out against this white, and the other predominant hue of bluish green. All three are delightful, and chubby, with very simplistic features. Their story is one to turn to when more traditional "make a friend" books don't fit the child's personality.
I don't know if I'm alone in thinking this but.....I feel that the author/illustrator is packed full of potential but currently leaves me unsatisfied. I feel unsaid things left hanging in the air or an incomplete ending. We leave the two new friends before bird "opens up" verbally to bear in any way--be it to tell of its shyness, to express compassion to bear for loss of balloon, or declaration of loyalty an not disappearing like other "friend."
Bird, Balloon and Bear is a picture book about being patient when developing childhood friendships. Simple, colorful illustrations with nicely sized text. For the 3+ child.
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