This review is from: When the Wind Bears Go Dancing (Paperback)
The illustrations in this fabulous little book are a delight, with rich colors, expressive animals, and marvelous details. The dancing bears float across the sky like a Chagall painting, play instruments, and drive a nifty little orange car; There are also many other lovable creatures, and sometimes you have to look carefully to find all the rabbits and squirrels hidden in the foliage.
The human element is a sweet brown haired girl in a blue dress and floppy flowered hat, and who is afraid of the storm. Her mother introduces her to the bears, and she starts to see the storm as a friendly, magical event.
The highlight for me is the big cat trio with the lion playing the violin, and the verse for this is:
"Then the lions and leopards and lynx play the strings.
Hear them howling and yowling the way the wind sings".
All the verses are simple but well written, and have an imaginative charm that goes well with the pictures.
As an artist/illustrator, I take my hat off to the award winning Phoebe Stone, for her unique and exquisite work in this book. Stone also has made a name for herself as a fine artist, and "When the Wind Bears Go Dancing" was the first children's book she both wrote and illustrated. Art pieces from this book have been exhibited at the Boston area DeCordova Museum, and at The Society of Illustrators in New York City, and my favorite "lion and violin" illustration graced the cover of Booklist Magazine.
If you have a child who is afraid of nature's wilder moments, this book will help to calm their negative feelings, and bring a sense of adventure to scary elements like lightning, wind and rain.
The paper is a nice quality with a semi-gloss sheen, and the color reproduction is superb.