Monday, April 24, 2017

Book Review: Berenstain Bears Friendship Blessings Collection

We enjoy the Berenstain Bears in our family, and I appreciate having five stories combined into one volume, a hardback book which should last longer.  Since we did not enjoy the stories equally, I thought I would treat each one separately.
  1. The Perfect Fishing Spot.  I did not like this story.  After Mama Bear tells Papa Bear that he should just buy some fish for their supper, he goes on a bumbling trip around the countryside trying to find somewhere to catch some fish.  He keeps getting into troubles and scrapes until he finally follows Mama's advice and just buys some fish.  The moral of the story seems to be that husbands should just do what their wives tell them to.  In our world where man are made fun of and treated like idiots in movies and on tv, we don't need to add to this disrespect by reading such stories to our children.
  2. Reap the Harvest.  Brother and Sister don't know what to do with their summer until they see Farmer Ben's "Help Wanted" sign.  He agrees to hire them but will only pay them at the end of the summer via his cash crop.  He won't know how much he earns, and therefore how much he can pay them, until the corn is harvested.  The cubs work hard all summer and earn a nice paycheck at the end.  They learn about hard work and how rewards often don't come until it's all over.
  3. Faithful Friends.  Sister has a disagreement with one of her friends because she's been spending a lot of time with a different friend.  Brother shows Sister how maybe her friend is jealous because she thinks Sister has forgotten her, and he encourages her to do things with all of her friends.  The girls make up and appreciate their friendship even more.
  4. Kindness Counts.  Brother Bear loves putting together model airplanes, and a younger cub would like to help him.  Brother remembers how Papa let him help when he didn't know how, so he lets this other cub help.  Brother learns that what goes around often comes around, especially with kindness.
  5. God Made You Special.  This story is my favorite.  The Bear family has friends come visit, and they bring a cub who doesn't act like the other cubs.  It seems like he has Down's syndrome or something similar.  Mama Bear explains to Sister that God made everyone special, even people who are different.  The other mother bear adds that maybe God uses these people to teach us something.
As you can see, we enjoyed four of the five tales in this book.  I plan to keep it and read them often, just omitting the first one.

I want to thank BookLook Bloggers for my review copy of this book, but my opinions are my own.

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