Tuesday, July 1, 2008

The Bear's Bicycle

Bear's Bicycle
Emilie Warren McLeod with illustrations by David McPhail
Little, Brown and Co., 1975

As mentioned before, I have a real soft spot for David McPhail. His illustrations so vividly transform me back to my childhood, that I get a huge kick out of it when my son pulls one of his off the bookshelf. The cross hatch drawings. The vivid colors. The crumbled little grin on the bear. And boy, does the dude have a bear fixation. Seems like every single one of his books from the 70s (almost) involves some fabulous giant brown bear.

So there's this kid, and he has a stuffed bear, and they take a bike ride... with the little bear transforming into a big, real bear to ride his own way-too-tiny training-wheeled trike. (Am not sure if the boy himself imagines the bear riding the bike or if there is a little magic involved.) Through the journey, the bear and the boy show us all the dos and don'ts of bike safety and etiquette.

Every day we go bike riding.
I check the tires and the brakes
and make sure the handlebars turn.
Then I get on my bike
and coast down the driveway

For every right move the boy makes, a disaster waits for the bear. A great title to show to a child learning to enjoy the freedom of a two-wheeler.

Also by:
The Bear's Toothache
The Magical Drawings of Moony B. Finch


ohAmanda said...

I found you in the comments at Design Mom...(about Wall-e...my 2 yo saw it...she wasn't too scared...she thinks wall-e is adorable!)...but I LOVE this blog! Vintage books are my fave. I can't wait to look around!

Kim said...

The illustrations look familiar. Is McPhail the artist of Jamberry? I'll have to check my bookshelf. Thanks for all the great recommendations.

daysease said...

Love that illustration of the cute, huge, squishable bear!!!

Burgin Streetman said...

i've never read jamberry, but I'll have to check it out now. :)

Anonymous said...

As for Wall-E, my son also adores the movie. I even had to download it for him (if you need, here's the link

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