After the past couple of years when life has been so challenging, Masami S.C decided to write and illustrate Brown Bear and Oofie Present: The Loss of a Loved One to help young children come to terms with loss. When Serena got in touch about her project, I knew I had to feature it here on Linda’s Book Bag and I’m delighted to share my review today.
My enormous thanks to Serena for sending me a copy of Brown Bear and Oofie Present: The Loss of a Loved One as well as Brown Bear and Oofie Present: The Loss of Identity and Brown Bear and Oofie Present: The Verbal Bully.
Brown Bear and Oofie Present: The Loss of a Loved One is available for purchase through the links here and worldwide on Amazon.
Brown Bear and Oofie Present: The Loss of a Loved One
Death is inevitable. No one likes to talk about it because it is such a depressing and emotional topic. Brown Bear & Oofie are best friends and have life learning experiences together. In The Loss of a Loved One, Brown Bear’s Grandma (Mimi), has died. Oofie helps Brown Bear with emotional support and they discuss the topic of death together. This book will help parents and kids ease into this very difficult fact of life. The detailed facial expressions of the two characters will help children connect with their own emotions and grief that they are experiencing from their personal loss of a loved one.
This book is not geared towards any one particular religion. Instead, it provides comfort and inspires the reader to keep an open mind about the possibilities of what happens to us once we depart.
My Review of Brown Bear and Oofie Present: The Loss of a Loved One
A children’s book about the grieving process.
Those of you who know my reviews of children’s books will know I have a pet niggle and so I’m going to get it out of the way before I review The Loss of a Loved One properly. I really prefer words not to be written entirely in upper case letters, even in direct speech, as I don’t feel it models how we want children to learn to write. Right. That’s that done!
Although The Loss of a Loved One is a children’s book, I found the author’s introduction both moving and helpful as it is relevant to any child – whatever their age.
The story is simple as Brown Bear and Ooofie discuss Brown Bear’s Grandma Mimi who has just died. I liked the way Oofie introduced the death of a pet too as this is often the first encounter with death that children have, making The Loss of a Loved One relevant and relatable.
The more difficult vocabulary is highlighted and explained with a glossary of featured words at the end so that The Loss of a Loved One gently introduces language to help children articulate their emotions in a valuable and helpful manner. Indeed, the physical presentation of the book also helps here as there is a charmingly illustrated version of events in Brown Bear and Oofie’s conversation mostly on the right hand pages, with a second more detailed exposition on the left page which has plenty of white space and clear font for emergent and young readers to access so that grief is explained and explored with some practical advice given. This makes The Loss of a Loved One useful in a variety of situations from home and school to community venues. The robust cover ensures a durability in community setting too.
I particularly liked the illustrations in The Loss of a Loved One because they have a simple charm and as they don’t depict a particular race or ethnicity, being toys, there is no danger of exclusion.
Brown Bear and Oofie Present: The Loss of a Loved One is an important and helpful children’s book to help them and the adults in their lives, come to terms with grief and how to accept and overcome it. There’s the raising of what happens after death without any particular belief being advocated so that the story leads to further discussion. It is especially sensitive in explaining that we all react differently to grief and that no particular reaction is the correct one. I really recommend it.
About Masami S.C.
Masami S.C. is a pseudonym created by Serena Masami Caspary, a NYU graduate with a BFA in dance from Tisch School of the Arts.