Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Book Review : Bhabhloo Bear's Adventure

Title : Bhabhloo Bear's Adventure
Author : Paro Anand
Illustrator : Suvidha Mistry
A Pratham book

A wonderful story on Himalayan Bears and a secret about how they got a shiny 'V' on their chests.

A beautiful little bear and a very naughty one - Bhabhaloo made this all happen. His inquisitive mind buzzed with hundreds and thousands of questions all the time which made him restless even during the nights when everyone else sleeps. His desire to be a famous bear made him go on a thrilling adventure. The idea of this adventure flashed through his mind while he was watching the tall Deodar trees swaying in the night sky and were touching the moon when they moved. His imaginative mind started working - how can he be the first ever bear on the moon, his pictures flashing in the morning newspapers and scientists watching him through their telescopes. All this excitement gave him sufficient impetus to embark on this rare feat.

But could he actually reach the moon? Could the fragile tip of the Deodar tree make him fulfill his dreams of becoming a famous bear?

Unfortunately he realized it too late and then remembered his mother's words of first thinking about the consequences before plunging directly into any task. Now his body was lying still and motionless on the white snow. Bhabhaloo's mother came rushing out to see what happened to her dear little baby. But there was someone else too watching this whole sequence of events - the Moon. The moon then thought of helping the mother in a unique way and the next moment mother bear was working dexterously to stitch her child with the glistening moonbeam. Bhabhaloo bear soon became alright with a bright 'V' adorning his chest now.

Eventually Bhabhloo did achieve what he dreamt of - becoming a famous bear and because of him the Himalayan Bears are not just plain black anymore.

But what happened to the moon? He turned into a thin slice since he had given so much of his moonbeam but he reassured the bears that he would get healthy again and then more bears can have the unique 'V' for their chests.

One of the very new books by Pratham. The different emotions are beautifully touched in the book- cheerfulness, innocence, pain, sadness, feeling of loss and then a happy ending.
While reading this story to the kids, I could see the changing expressions on their faces. They even closed their eyes at one point when Bhabhaloo was lying on the snow in complete silence. Such chirpy little Bear and not stirring at all!! It was heart wrenching and unbearable to watch.

The illustrations are simple sketches in white, black and tinge of blue, transporting us to one of the Himalayan peaks. The endearing expressions on Bhabhloo's face and his bright eyes reach out to the young and adult readers alike.
We searched a little bit more and saw some pictures of Himalayan Bears on the web. Here is one : Himalayan Bear
{Image courtesy : Pratham Books}

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