Mama Bear

3.6 avg rating
( 5 ratings by Goodreads )
 
9780395634127: Mama Bear

Mei-Mei sees the perfect Christmas gift for herself -- a soft, warm teddy bear -- but it is too expensive. However, Mei-Mei learns that the very best Christmas present of all has been there all along.

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From School Library Journal:

Kindergarten-Grade 3-The author of the fable Square Beak (Houghton, 1993) now uses a realistic story to make her point. In Boston's Chinatown, Mei-Mei longs to buy the large, expensive teddy bear sitting in a toy-shop window. Her mother's salary from Chef Wong's restaurant must go to fix the heater, so the little girl schemes to raise the purchase price by herself. Mrs. Wong, charmed by the child's entrepreneurial spirit, proves an unexpected ally. On Christmas Eve, when Mei-Mei still has not raised enough money to buy the bear, she finds the comfort and warmth she dreamed it would bring in an unexpected but familiar source. Robinson's gentle, low-keyed illustrations, restrained yet evocative in gesture and expression, depict figures with just enough backdrop and props to suggest settings of the street, restaurant, and home. Both art and text draw strength from a strong mother-daughter relationship and from the determination of this quiet story's heroine.
Margaret A. Chang, North Adams State College, MA
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Publishers Weekly:

Mei-Mei desperately wants a large teddy bear she spies in a shop window. When her mother explains that they can't afford it, especially now that their heater needs to be fixed, the child responds, "If we had the bear, we wouldn't need the heater. We could hug the bear. It would keep us warm." Determined, she begins stashing coins in a glass vase. Then, after saving the almond cookies she receives for helping at the restaurant where her mother works, Mei-Mei asks for-and receives-the restaurant owner's permission to hold a cookie sale. At last, she adds up her earnings. But in an unexpected ending, Mother declares that there is still not enough money to buy the bear. Hugging Mei-Mei, she asks, "Am I soft?... Am I warm?" The daughter answers affirmatively, realizing, "Hey, you are my mama bear." The delicate black lines and soft colors of debut illustrator Robinson's art make for some effective images, but the lack of background in most of the pictures leaves the pages looking empty and stark. Ages 4-8.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Sun, Chyng Feng
Published by HMH Books for Young Readers (1994)
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