David Ezra Stein has a beautiful sense of comic timing (Pouch, Interrupting Chicken) that has not deserted him in his new picture book, in which a bear waking from hibernation—“It was his second year. ‘I’m back!’ he said.”—remembers the terrific taste of honey. Warm and whimsical for the toddler set. Ages 2–5.
This sweet companion to David Ezra Stein's award-winning Leaves celebrates the joy of savoring something you love.
Bear is ravenous when he wakes up from his winter sleep and has one thing on his mind: honey! Alas, it is too soon for honey, so Bear tries hard to be patient. The world around him is waking up, too, and he soon remembers all the other things he loves, like warm grass, berries, and rain. He's almost content, until, one day, he hears a welcome buzzing sound . . . and finally it is time for Bear to delight in the thing he relishes above all others--and it is as warm, golden, sweet, and good as he remembered.
About the Author
Award-winning children's author and illustrator David Ezra Stein was born in Brooklyn, New York. His works include Interrupting Chicken, Leaves, Monster Hug!, Tad and Dad, Pouch!, and Ol' Mama Squirrel. In addition to winning the Ezra Jack Keats award in 2008 and a Caldecott Honor in 2011, Stein's books have been named to several major book lists, such as Publishers Weekly's Best Book of the Year, Kirkus Reviews' Editor's Choice, and School Library Journal's Best Book. He lives in Kew Gardens, New York, with wife, Miriam, and their son, Sam.
* “The curious young bear from Leaves returns for ‘his second year,’ fresh from hibernation and eager for the taste of honey. . . . In the meantime, the other delights of spring and summer beckon, and the bear relishes warm grass, bursting berries, and rushing rain as he waits for the telltale buzz that heralds his favorite treat. Highlighting the natural greens and golds of summer, Stein’s pen-and-watercolor illustrations are suffused with loose, childlike exuberance, while their relatively small scale invites a sense of intimacy, drawing readers into the bear’s anticipation and eventual satisfaction. Throughout, the art balances the straightforward sensory details of the text, with some actions described and others—such as a well-deserved bee sting on the nose—purely visual. A seasonal read with storytime potential and staying power, Honey is not to be missed.”—School Library Journal, starred review
* “Working in deceptively simple visual vignettes enclosed in rough-edged panels, Stein’s wriggly pen-and-ink lines bring a quality of vitality to the natural features of Bear’s habitat. . . . Gentle outing about waiting and appreciating.”—Publishers Weekly, starred review
“The text emphasizes Bear’s single-minded pursuit, but when he must wait, it turns to his delight in the world around him as the spring turns to summer and then fall. The short sentences and the many sensory words work well, helping readers to share his experiences. . . . The freewheeling, expressive illustrations bring Bear’s world to life on the page. A well-crafted sequel to Leaves.”—Booklist
“Framed, energetic watercolors. . . . Stein's figures are gestural, loose, simple lines delineating his protagonist, whose round head and simplified body will foster an easy relationship with young readers. . . . Sweet as, well, honey.”—Kirkus Reviews
“The softly blended colors . . . evoke the passing of the seasons from spring to the height of summer into fall, complemented by rhythmic, alliterative prose. . . . This quiet story about the simple pleasures of summer and the building anticipation of something good will warm cold winter nights and elicit conversations with older listeners about memories of any season.”—The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books
“Stein captures Bear’s wide-eyed enthusiasm for discovering the natural world around him, as Bear eagerly puts all his senses to work. . . . The use of repetition and the steady pacing, which then accelerates once Bear finally hears buzzing bees, make for compelling page-turns. Stein’s clean page design and uncluttered compositions keep the focus on the endearing protagonist, who is depicted in relaxed, carefree lines. . . . Stein’s writing is filled with vivid descriptors. . . . Any toddler who has ever waited patiently (or not-so-patiently) for something will relate to the sight of Bear racing toward the bees (“Ouch!”). Once single-minded Bear does get the honey, readers can’t help but rejoice with him as he delights in it. Simply delicious.”—The Horn Book