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4.9 out of 5 stars205
4.9 out of 5 stars
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on 15 March 2012
I bought it because it was so well reviewed - and I loved it. Beautiful illustrations (I think I may have to buy a print too!), wonderful pace and dark humour. However, it does fit that contemporary genre of "children's books that are for arty adults". So - although I do love it, and have gone on to buy it as a present for others, don't assume the younger readers will be as enamoured with it.
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on 28 January 2012
This is a wonderful book. It made me laugh out loud and not just on the first reading. The simple text and delightful graphic style are stylish and satisfying, and the story is hilarious, but also conveys depths of seething emotions. Tragi-comic genius! Exactly expresses the mindset of a passionate toddler, but will also appeal to adults.
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on 4 June 2012
I found this book in Waterstones with my friend, we are both over 12 and by the end we were absolutely killing ourselves with laughter, very cute and funny book, was very tempted to buy it. Very good and hilarious book.
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on 29 December 2011
Fantastic book for adults to enjoy reading to Children. short enough to not be a chore but simple enough to be able to endow with your own personality - not that you need to - this book has personality in bucketloads.
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on 13 November 2011
I saw the cover from across a crowded bookshop and knew I had to read it. I read it and laughed out loud and knew I had to buy it. This book is an absolute gem and now I want to share it. I read it to a very streetwise class of eight year olds and there was absolute silence for the first time that day. I hope everyone who buys it enjoys it as much as I have.
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on 22 November 2011
As a bookseller who spends most of her time in the children's department, I have read a lot of picture books. This is my absolute favourite! The pictures are so stylish, and the twist at the end made me laugh out loud when I first read it. How often do you see rage black-outs illustrated in children's books? It's also really lovely book to handle, and looks great on a book shelf. I spend my time exhorting everyone that comes into the children's department to buy it, and I really hope it becomes as popular as my other favourites by Oliver Jeffers.
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 7 November 2012
I wish to begin this review with a warning that it will contain spoilers. This is a children's book with a very unique ending and you will either love or hate this book based on your reaction to the ending. I chose this book specifically because I had read how it ended and thought my children would find this amusing - but other children may be upset by this. Each parent knows their own child best so you'll have to consider how your child will react.

At first glance this appears to be a book for very young children. It is very simple, with very large bold text which is double spaced on a white background. The vast majority of the text is in black, but a limited amount is in red for emphasis. Most of the words are very easy words to read such as "hat", "look" and "please". There is quite a lot of repetition, and there are only 68 different words used to create this whole story. This makes it ideal for beginning readers, and I would compare this with Oxford Reading Tree level 2 or perhaps 3. The most challenging words in this book were "pointy", "excuse" and "questions", but even if your child is unfamiliar with these words, the vast majority of the words will be familiar to any child who is beginning to read - so you can easily point out the 3 most difficult words. As far as reading level, I would put this at age 5 - possibly even age 4 and feel this would be easier for a new reader than even the easiest of Dr Seuss books.

But as simple as this story sounds - the humour is far more advanced. I found this book amusing myself,and both my 4 year old and 7 year old had a good laugh. Because this book has a unique - if slightly twisted approach I feel this book would be perfect for older children who struggle to read more advanced books but feel embarrassed or bored with traditional picture books.

The story itself is quite simple. Bear has lost his hat - and he wants it back. Bear is a good natured fellow. He politely asks each animal he meets if they have seen his hat, and helps others where he can. Most of the animals reply that they haven't seen his hat. One asks what a hat is. Only one answers quite rudely. Rabbit's lines are in red as he angrily replies that he hasn't seen it - he wouldn't steal a hat and why is Bear asking him? Bear walks away politely but later realises Rabbit was wearing a red and pointy hat. Bear's hat was red and pointy. A very angry Bear runs back shouting "You stole my hat!"

The next scene shows a very happy bear wearing his hat. But when squirrel asks if he has seen a rabbit wearing a hat he replies angrily - in red that he has not. He has not seen any rabbits anywhere. He would not eat a rabbit. "Don't ask me anymore questions" he says. We do not actually see the rabbit's demise, but even the youngest children will catch on to this - and some may be upset by this book.

This is one of those books you just have to get very involved in reading - shouting and taking the huff when reading the conversations in red. It would easily adapt to a play for beginning readers. My sons love the arguing, but especially the realisation that bear has eaten rabbit. It is a perfect book to encourage children to read with expression.

We have a vast collection of books, and there is nothing wrong with having some that are very sweet and cute. But some children get tired of sweet and cute - especially boys and I feel this puts many off books. I very actively search for books that break the stereotypes of typical children's stories.

In addition to being a fun story - this book can serve as useful conversation starter on all sorts of topics. We discussed the idea of stealing which is wrong - but does it justify murder? We decided that anyone foolish enough to steal from and then further provoke a large bear had it coming for foolishness -but how else could the bear have handled it? How about the rabbit? We discussed the idea of protesting too much - why did the rabbit react so angrily to the question? His reaction was so extreme because he has a guilty conscience. Does this apply with children? Why do we feel angry when we know we have done something wrong? How does this make the other person feel? "The rabbit doth protest too much methinks" is already becoming a common line in our house.

Because this is an illustrated book - I feel I must mention the illustrations. They are very simple and somewhat crude. There is no real background scenery. Each illustration has one or two animals, and perhaps a small plant on a cream coloured background. In contrast to most modern illustrations for young children that have busy pictures with bold colours and plenty of activity - these appear to be purposely understated.
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on 18 February 2012
I can't praise this book highly enough. A fantastic little story for children but with humour that the parent will ejnoy just as much, possibly more. Brilliant illustrations too!
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on 1 December 2011
This book is BRILLIANT. The best kids book I have read in years, and we read alot in our house!
The story is great,kids love it and I laughed out loud three times when I first read it. Buy it. It is destined to become a children's classic, and if it doesn't there is no justice in the world!
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on 5 March 2012
Well, to give you the context, I'm an 18 year old male and after seeing part of this book online I thought it was beautiful. I proceeded to buy it and waited impatiently for it to arrive. At first I read through it alone, before sharing it with not only my family, but also at school and at various parties with a select group of friends. Since, We've read the book in various states of intoxication and it has been wonderful every time.
We've also decided to independently adapt the book into a sock-puppet show (yes, non-commercially don't worry)and have already begun making the puppets!
It is a book to be enjoyed by all ages and is filled with marvellous twists and humour, I would readily recommend it to anyone!
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