Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The TTLG 2011 Picture Book Celebration: One hundred and nine

The Paddington statue in
Paddington Station
When I was a child, a friend of mine was given a stuffed Paddington Bear, which I secretly coveted. I had read all the books and I so wanted to have that wonderful soft bear with its blue duffel coat, red hat, red wellington boots, and the cunning little brown suitcase that came with it. Alas, it was not to be, but when my daughter started to show an interest in the Paddington stories, I was able to get her the toy bear as we were passing through London.

For today's Picture Book Celebration title I have a picture book version of the first Paddington Bear story.

Michael Bond
Illustrated by R.W. Alley
Picture Book
For ages 4 to 7
HarperCollins, 2007, 978-0-06-117074-4
   One morning Mr. and Mrs. Brown are waiting for their daughter’s train in Paddington station when they see something very strange. There appears to be a bear standing near the Left Luggage office. The Browns are surprised to see a that there is small furry bear wearing a duffle coat and a red hat in the train station, and they go up to the bear to ask if there is anything they can do to help him.
   The bear explains that he is a “stowaway” from Darkest Peru, and the Browns are amazed that such a small bear could manage such a long journey all on his own. Mrs. Brown immediately suggests that the bear should come to stay with them. After all, something might happen to the bear if he is left alone. The Browns decide to call the bear Paddington, which the bear likes very much indeed, and then Paddington and Mr. Brown go to the snack bar.
   Paddington is very hungry and thirsty, so he is very pleased to see all the delicious treats that the waitress brings. In fact he is so happy that he climbs onto the table “to get a better look” at everything. Which is when the trouble starts.
   Children and their families have been enjoying the Paddington Bear books since the first book featuring the famous bear came out in 1958. His gentle, sweet, and funny personality has made Paddington a household name around the world.
   This wonderful picture book version of the first Paddington bear story makes the story accessible to even younger readers, which is a truly wonderful thing. 

If you are a Paddington Bear fan you might like to visit Paddington's website.

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