The Other Bears by Michael Thompson

The Other Bears - Michael        Thompson

**Thank you Star Bright Books and Netgalley for providing this in exchange for an honest review**


What I liked: The little information facts about the different bear species. Each bear gets two or three sentences explaining what part of the world they come from and one or two of their distinctive physical characteristics.

What I didn't like: Everything else.

New Bear families are moving into the neighborhood and Ma and Pa Koala are not happy about this. These new families are unacceptable. First come the Pandas (in a rickshaw just to make sure you know they're from China). Their ears and shoes visually assault Ma and Pa. Then come the Polar Bears (decked out in stereotypical Eskimo gear). Their offences are their coats and their claws. Following them come the Black, Brown, and Sun Bear families. Once again, every single family unsuitable for one reason or another. Thankfully, the Koala children haven't picked up their parents prejudices yet. The children love every new experience that comes with meeting the new families. I believe the author was trying to show the parents not necessarily as prejudice, but as ignorant. And had they truly did a 180, I could by that. The problem is, their opinions didn't come across as truly changed. One of the closing lines in this book is "All their grumpiness melted away, watching the little Koalas play". The parents didn't lose their "grumpiness" due to acceptance. They were just happy that their own kids were happy. I don't feel books books for this age group should be so heavy handed just because they're childrens books. You can't just gloss over and simplify topics like racism just because your audience is younger. It seems some authors forget that little kids pick up everything. This book should have shown how the parents realized they were wrong. I honestly wouldn't let any of the children in my family read this