I AM A BEAR by Jean-Francois Dumont is a heart-breaking picture book about homelessness, compassion, and acceptance.
Dumont tells the story of a homeless bear living in a city on the edge of society. Even a little kindness brings happiness into his otherwise lonely life.
Dumont is a magnificent storyteller blending simple text with amazing illustrations. His authentic examination of homelessness is powerful and will strike a cord for those who have spent time in urban areas.
Librarians will find this picture book can be experienced on two levels. Young children will empathize with the sad bear without understand the connection to societal issues of homeless. Older children will experience a slightly different story with roots in the loneliness that comes from isolation and a sense of invisibility connected with homelessness. Regardless of the target audience, this book will generate lots of discussion and has the potential to change young lives for the better.
Published by Eerdmans Books for Young Readers September 8, 2015.