Monday, April 2, 2018

"Great Polar Bear" - a bookwrap


"Great Polar Bear"
by Carolyn Lesser

        Age Range: 5 - 6 years
Grade Level: Preschool - 2
Hardcover: 32 pages
Publisher: Seagrass Press (April 3, 2018)
Language: English

Unwrapping some illustrations for you

Praise for the previous edition (The Great Crystal Bear):

“Lyrical in tone and accurate in zoological detail, the narrative is ideal for one-on-one sharing.”—School Library Journal

“In a rolling, poetic text, Lesser wonders about the life of a polar bear....She weaves her gentle musings with solid scientific information, as the bear searches for food, traps and eats a seal, and play fights with younger bears to teach them how to battle for a mate.....for primary-graders, this would make an evocative addition to a unit on the Arctic.”—Booklist

“Lesser weaves a surprising number of facts into a lyrical narrative about a year in the life of a polar bear. Readers learn how the bear's hollow white hairs gather sunlight while its black skin absorbs the heat, how it kills and eats and leaves behind meat for other, less able, animals.”—Kirkus Reviews

Great Crystal Bear is exciting, neat and fun to read. It’s a book about a polar bear and how he mates and that he eats seals.....I would recommend this to about anyone who is interested in polar bears.—Taryn Butler, 10, Gold Hill Elementary, Tega Cay, SC, GRP”—The American Scientist, The Scientific Research Society

“Great Crystal Bear is a children’s book that will also appeal to adults, providing a lyrical, impressionistic, and yet factual look at the great white bears....the book is sure to become a favorite during storytime in your house.”—San Diego Zoo member newsletter

“This is a book children will enjoy hearing and reading over and over which will inform them of the life of one solitary animal in the world of large mammals.”—The Open Book

About the book

"Great polar bear...
how do you survive
on the thick ice covering the deep Arctic Sea?"

Thus begins the journey of a powerful and impressive polar bear as he roams the barren frozen landscape of the Arctic, solo.  The author documents his scientifically accurate movements for about a year.

She explains how these magnificent creatures forage for their food,  have to rely on a healthy arctic ecosystem and perfect ice creating weather.  Ideal ice is critical for their very existence and for future polar bear generations to transpire.  

Carolyn Lesser uses her beautiful hand-painted and cut-out paper collages to further enrich and enhance her narrative.  This book was originally published in 1996 as "The Great Crystal Bear" and since then the author has updated it with all-new artwork for the reader's enjoyment.  They truly are spectacular. 

She cleverly includes at the end of the book: explorer's notes, a map depicting the global location of polar bears, and her own personal journal.  I think the book should be geared to a higher age level as it is slower-paced and includes facts that older children will find more interesting than a younger reader.  The story is told in freeform poetry style which is very lyrical and therefore easy to read.  To me, the illustrations were by far the best part of the book and I do recommend that this book to be included in classrooms and elementary school libraries.  

Storywraps Rating -  4 HUGS!!!!

About the author/illustrator

Carolyn Lesser is the author of What a Wonderful Day to Be a Cow, Storm on the Desert, and other children’s titles that celebrate the natural world.

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