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Picture Books

Wo ist Bär? by Jonathan Bentley

 

Storyline

Theo is really unhappy. He must go to bed but he couldn’t find his bear. Being really tired he’s looking for him. Everywhere. Did he leave him in the bathroom? Or has he fallen under the table? Where is bear? Can you help him find it?


© CARLSEN
© CARLSEN

Bibliographic Description

Title: Wo ist Bär?
Author: Jonathan Bentley
Illustrator: Jonathan Bentley
Translator: Constanze Steindamm
Publisher: CARLSEN, Hamburg
Publishing Date: 01.09.2016
Pages: 32 pages
Price: € 12.99 (hardcover)
ISBN: 9783551518781
Language: German
Recommendation: for readers of the age of 3 and up / language level A1
Ranking: 5.0 von 5.0

The original edition called Where Is Bear? first published in English in 2016 by Little Hare Books.


My Opinion

Wo ist Bär? not a long story, and neither it is particularly grabbing. But it doesn’t have to be! It’s lovely anyway. It’s about a situation from everyday life, which probably everyone has experienced as a child at least once: You must go to bed, but you couldn’t find your beloved cuddly toy.

Jonathan Bentley has successfully implemented this situation in a cute picture-book. Not only in words, but in pictures as well.

I love the colours he chose for his illustrations because they create a very cosy atmosphere. I also like the fact that there are some “main colours” (blue, brown and green) which you find on every page throughout the book.

I also fell in love with the way he drew Theo, the little boy and main character of Wo ist Bär? Isn’t he cute? I like his drawing style in general though.


Conclusion

I think there aren’t many picture-books with less text, which are exciting to read for adults. In my opinion, this one is a wonderful exception; especially because of its witty plot. And there is not one single point I could complain about, so five of five points it is 😀


 

Dear Enthusiasts of The German Language

Wo ist Bär? is a great way for beginners to improve your German skills. Are you struggling with learning prepositions? Then try this book. On almost every page you’ll find another preposition used in a short sentence (five words and less), which are accompanied by clear illustrations.


Dear Enthusiasts of The English Language

The English edition would be also a quite nice way to learn prepositions I guess. But unfortunately, it doesn’t seem to be available in bookshops any more. Shame! But if you’re interested in it, you might be able to borrow it in your local library (or the next bigger one). Alternatively, you might be able to order it second hand. (Hopefully to a reasonable price.)

 

Kleiner Panda Pai – Auf leisen Tatzen by Saskia Hula and Kerstin Schoene

Storyline

Oh dear, the 10th rabbit child is missing…. How could that even have happened?! While little red panda Pai, who thought Wildpark life wouldn’t hold ready anything new for him at all, is still wondering about that mysterious missing person case, his friend Wanda has already sensed a new adventure. But even her detective agency suffers from a shortage of staff faced with the high amount of witnesses. Without hesitation, the racoon girl is with the pink bow tie in her fur pushed Pai right into the investigations and declared Pai to be detective assistant. How exciting! But will Pai be able to perform his new task? Or will he suffer the same fate as Anderson? (Yep. I AM referring to the Sherlock series in a picture book review… #iamsorry #butijustcouldnothelpit 😅)


Bibliographic Description

© Loewe Verlag

Title: Kleiner Panda Pai – Auf leisen Tatzen
Author: Saskia Hula
Illustrator: Kerstin Schoene
Publisher: Loewe Verlag, Bindlach
Publishing Date: 16.01.2017
Pages: 32 pages
Price: € 12.95 (hardcover)
ISBN: 978-3-7855-8472-9
Language: German
Recommendation: for readers of the age of 3 years and up / language level A2/B1
Ranking: 3.75 of 5.0

 


My Opinion

When I discovered Panda Pai for the first time, I’ve instantly fallen in love with the illustrations. I love the way the characters (and especially their facial expressions) look like. Merlin’s beard, aren’t they cute? 😀

The style of painting seemed to be familiar to me, but a proper reason didn’t come to my mind. So I visited Kerstin Schoene’s website and finally realised why. “Die Geschichte vom kleinen Siebenschläfer, der nicht einschlafen konnte” and “Ein Haufen Freunde” are amongst the books she has illustrated so far, and I really enjoyed them.

I also enjoyed her illustrations for „Panda Pai“, because they are so colourful and cheerful. And I mean, the main character is a red panda. I know, liking red cat-bears is kinda trendy these days, but let’s face it: You can’t resist them, can you? 😀 They are SO adorable. It’s also quite difficult to resist Kerstin Schoene’s depiction of racoons, rabbits and meerkats as well😉

About the story, I like Saskia Hula’s choice of words best. I think her sentences sound quite melodic and there is something special about them, but some of the words she used I find unnecessarily difficult to understand for children at the age of three (like geraunt or dubios, for instance.) I also missed an arch of suspense. As it is a detective story, I expected it to be way more thrilling. But if you pay only a little attention to the illustrations, the story is quite predictable. Too bad! 😕


Conclusion

Though I liked the gorgeous illustrations and the author’s style of writing pretty much, I’ve got to deduct 1.25 points; 0.75 points for the lack of suspense and 0.5 more points for the difficult language choice.

In my humble opinion the story of “Kleiner Panda Pai – Auf leisen Tatzen” really is a cute one and worth a read, but unfortunately, it hasn’t been able to convince me entirely.


Dear Enthusiasts of the German Language

It wasn’t easy to recommend a language level. recommend this book, but I go with A2/B1. “Kleiner Panda Pai – Auf leisen Tatzen” wouldn’t be my first choice, if you would ask me for a recommendation to improve your reading skills in German. In the texts are words used, which I would never use in a normal everyday life conversation; geraunt, verdrossen or dubios, for instance.


 

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