Friday, January 29, 2016

PPBF: Maudie and Bear

Today's Perfect Picture Book Friday pick

Maudie and Bear,
by Jan Ormerod and Freya Blackwood
Maudie and Bear
Written by Jan Ormerod
Illustrated by Freya Blackwood
G. P. Putnam's Sons, 2010,
American edition 2012
ages 3-8, under 800 words

Friendship, Manners

"I need some exercise," said Maudie.
"Fresh air would be nice," said Bear.
"How about a bike ride?" said Maudie

Maudie and Bear are friends. In this picture book with five short stories, readers are introduced to imaginative, adorable Maudie. She is an everyman, playing in the yard, eating cookies, having tea parties. Bear is more like a beloved dad. It is the believable reactions of Maudie and the patient love of Bear that make this book a Frog and Toad for this generation. Stories include "Making Up", where Maudie's antics make Bear laugh. Maudie can't understand why anyone would be laughing at her, except to poke fun, and so a tiff ensues. In "Telling Stories" Bear makes excuses for listening to Maudie's made-up story with his eyes closed. Maudie tries everything little ones do to get Bear to stay awake but in the end, it is Bear who has to finish the tale. Also included are "The Bike Ride," "Home Sweet Home," and "The Snack."

What I Love:
Jan Ormerod perfectly captures the voice of little Maudie. She pouts without being spoiled. She exasperates without being annoying. The parent / child friendship is the perfect vehicle for these quiet stories which will seem familiar to any mom and idyllic to any child. Freya Blackwood's illustrations are . . . perfect. (Can't use that word too many times for this collection.) Her soft watercolors are both fresh and nostalgic. And the fabulous American edition was designed by Annie Ericsson, designeer extraordinaire. I dare you not to love this award-winning book.


Photos and variations courtesy Minieco
1. Early Words offers a teacher guide with activities, written by Dr. Robin Morrow.
2. I love the torn paper bear made by Crafty Morning. The no-scissors technique is easy for even the smallest readers.
3. Pair storytime with snacktime with bear toast from Kids Soup.
4. Have your students come up with additional adventures for Maudie and Bear. Use the existing stories to teach conflict and resolution.
5. Check out these and other related Perfect Picture Books from your local library.

Reviewed by Amy
Reviewed by Kirsten

Reviewed by Joanne
Reviewed by Stacy

Check out all the recommended titles for Perfect Picture Book Friday
for January 29, 2016, available on Susanna Leonard Hill's excellent blog.


  1. I love your review of this beautiful story about relationships. Will have to check it out for a grandchild. Such a great cover.

    1. Thank-you. I originally bought a copy as a gift, but ended up returning to the store. I just couldn't part with it. 'Hope they love it!

  2. I have added this book to my list for my trip to the library today. It sounds marvelous.

    1. I hope you find it. I like it especially because it is a picture book that can be read by little ones or it can be read to them. Thanks!

  3. Sold! We love Frog and Toad, so this collection sounds perfect. Maudie sounds like a very appealing character.

    1. Thanks for your comments. Just when I think Bear characters are overdone, I find a book like this. Enjoy!

  4. Great book,Joanne...and I LOVE the activities...will try the cut paper bear with my grandson.

  5. The book looks adorable, and the bear toast looks delicious! Think I need an excuse to make some?


Thank-you for taking time to share your thoughts!