Sad, Sad Bear – Kimberly Gee

   Sad, Sad Bear – Kimberly Gee, Karyn Lee (jacket design), Beach Lane Books, 9781534452718, 2021

Format: Hardcover

Rating:  1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 5

 Genre: Inspirational

 What did you like about the book? From the dedication at the beginning of the book “For all the hardworking mama bears and their cubs”, I knew I was going to love this book. Although the book focuses on how Bear is feeling sad, as a parent who has lived  through this exact situation, I also felt the sadness of mama bear too. Bear has to go to cub school because mama bear has to work. He is very sad when she leaves. However, he quickly makes friends in his class. He also gets to play and go on a hike. By the end of the day Bear was excited to come back to cub school. This book is the perfect book to read to prepare any young child for big transitions like starting a new school. It also acknowledges that these transitions also impact mothers/parents as well. While looking into the window mama bear sees Bear crying and she is drawn with sad features. Naming emotions for children is very important. It helps them feel validated and gives them the vocabulary to be able to name these emotions themselves. The pictures are cartoon drawings of Bear and his day. The author also does a really great job creating images of Bear that really show visually how he looks sad. 

Anything you did not like about the book? No.

 To whom would you recommend this book? This book is for parents who are anxious about their child’s first day at a new school or new experience. It is also great for young readers ages 2-4. It would be very helpful for them to be able to explore the emotions. It is also really good for children ages as young as 1 year old to talk about going to daycare and what the routine of the day will look like. 

Who should buy this book?  Parents, daycares/early learning centers 

Where would you shelve it?  Picture books

 Should we (librarians) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? Yes

 Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City:  Rose Metayer, Boston Latin School, Boston MA

Date of review:  03/17/2021

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