The Bears' Almanac
Stan and Jan Berenstain
later published as The Berenstain Bears' Almanac
Random House, 1973
At the belated request of Antmusic, I bring you another fabulous oldie penned by the Berenstains from their short-lived and out-of-print "Bear Facts Library". Subtitled "Almost everything small bears and kids need to know about almost everything", that's overstating it a bit, but still... if you want to know about the seasons, the months, the holidays and the weather, it's a great place to start. Along with The Bears' Nature Guide and The Bears' Science Fair, the three make up what was eventually published in one volume as The Bearenstain Bears' Book of Science and Nature. In my opinion, these are the best of the best from Stan and Jan... big, busy volumes of illustration, fun and learning. Perfect to get lost in, time and time again.
Bear Country is so rich with back-story and characters, that wading into a hefty classic like this feels like home. We trust as Actual Factual Bear gives us, well, the facts. We fear for Farmer Ben when he almost gets whisked away in a tornado. We can smell the pumpkin pie on Momma Bear's Thanksgiving table. And when Papa Bear offers to show Brother how to fly a kite, we sense the inevitable disaster.
Flying a kite is a very fine thing
that you and I can do in Spring.
I'm ready Dad. Let me try it.
I'll take it out right now and fly it.
Not yet, my boy. Hold on, son.
First I'll show you how it's done.
Yeah, uh huh, we all know where that's headed. Keep an eye out for any and all of these (looks like the three-volume together is a little pricey, though). Such great books, packed with information... always a new picture to find, a new fact to learn. Not to be missed by any small bear.
Berenstain Bears and the Spooky Old Tree
The Big Honey Hunt
The Bears' Activity Book
The Bears' Nature Guide