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Middle Child Blues

Middle Bear - Susanna Isern, Manon Gauthier

My personal reaction to this, rather dull coloured book was only 3 stars, but I shared it with my 2 year old granddaughter and her enthusiasm raised the star rating to 4. It usually takes her a few reads to feel 'friendly' towards a book, but as soon as we'd finished this she was asking for "Bear".


It tells the story of Middle Bear, who always seems to be either too small or too big. Being an eldest child, I guess I also missed the significance of being stuck in the middle, it seemed ideal to me, you could play with either sibling. But I can imagine that it might be difficult for some children and a book that encourages discussion about this would help children struggling with such a situation.

I loved the idea that the three bears could help their sick parents, and the illustration with the three of them tending to bed-ridden parents is adorable.


Unfortunately I'm not a great fan of this style of artwork and I'm mystified as to why the colours are so uninspiring. Maybe these childish illustrations attract children, I'd be interested to know.

This would be a great book for a pre-school library, to share within families.

I could also imagine it being the first of a series of Middle Bear adventures.