It’s my stop on the blog tour for My Dad Is A Grizzly Bear by Swapna Haddow and Dapo Adeola. This is one of the books I have been looking forward to all year and it did not disappoint!
First, I have to take a moment to appreciate the title page. I think you can tell so much about the energy of a book by what happens before the text even begins. Here, Dapo has drawn the beautiful family of four on a natural walk, with grizzly bear Dad leading the way. We couldn’t wait to read on.
The tone of the book is set from the very first spread. We love picture books where the illustrations play with our expectations and that exactly what My Dad Is A Grizzly Bear does. Our main character, a little boy says, “Shhh. Beware. My dad is a grizzly bear.” We see Dad brushing his teeth and he really is a grizzly bear! Or is he?
He definitely eats like a bear and sleeps like a bear. Sometimes he’s asleep even when he’s awake. (I’m starting to wonder if my husband is a bear..!).
Swapna and Dapo have taken every available opportunity to pack this book full of humour and diverse representation. I adore this cinema spread. We all know that grizzly bear who snores through the film. The expressions on each and every person in the cinema is genius. We spent a long time talking about how the different characters felt: annoyed, scared, embarrassed, curious.
Like all grizzly bears, Dad likes to go on loooong walks taking big strides. My daughter really liked this autumnal forest walk, particularly the squirrels looking on and the little boy stamping on the leaves.
But what happens if you meet a grizzly bear out in the wild? A gigantic, terrifying, hungry grizzly bear?
My Dad Is A Grizzly Bear is hilarious, heart-felt and utterly relatable, with knock-out illustrations. We loved the final page and we’re really hoping that it’s hinting at a sequel!
Published by Macmillan, 29 April 2021
Don’t forget to drop by the other stops on the blog tour!
I am very grateful to the publisher for providing me with a complimentary copy of this book. This voluntary review contains my honest opinion.