Review of Bear and the Whisper of the Wind

Bear and the Whisper of the Wind Bear and the Whisper of the Wind
by Marianne Dubuc; illus. by the author
Primary    Princeton    72 pp.    g
3/22    978-1-64896-119-9    $18.95

Bear lives in a nice house with a favorite chair, spends time with good friends, and loves “the smell of freshly baked strawberry pie,” but sometimes even a sweet life needs upending. A change in the wind prompts restless Bear to pack his “most treasured possessions” and leave in search of “something new.” Clad in red pants and yellow galoshes, Bear doesn’t have a destination in mind; instead, he lets the journey guide him, first to the home of Rabbit, whose roof he helps fix, and then onward until he meets Mouse, who lives in a valley with a stream and blueberry patch, which becomes Bear’s new favorite spot and home. Dubuc (Little Cheetah’s Shadow, rev. 7/20) thoughtfully addresses the complexities involved in giving up the safety of the known for the unknown: it can be scary (“What if I have made a terrible mistake?”) but also allows for personal growth and reward. Details in the art acknowledge the need for comfort during upheaval; some of those “treasured possessions,” which remind Bear of his old friends, reappear throughout. The mainly green and brown hues of the woodland setting in Dubuc’s precise pencil, colored-pencil, and watercolor illustrations reflect the naturalness of Bear’s desire for change.

From the July/August 2022 issue of The Horn Book Magazine.

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