Summary:  I have to say that I was not particularly looking forward to reading this book that was assigned to my kindergartener, but was pleasantly surprised to find great entertainment and academic value throughout the book.  A Bear Called Paddingtonby Michael Bond tells the story of a small bear from deepest, darkest, Peru who travelled to England and was found by a family at Paddington station in London.  In each chapter Paddington find himself in a mess of his own making, but he is greatly loved by his family and others who get to know him.  While I do not usually enjoy fantasy books in which animal characters interact with human characters, this book was humorous and enjoyable.  Throughout the book many opportunities arose to discuss new vocabulary words with my kindergartener which helped me justify this book as a “school text.”

Pros:  A fun book for late preschool through early elementary age children with easy-to-understand language, yet just enough new vocabulary and complicated storylines to stretch this age group.

Cons:  A bit unbelievable, so it may be a stretch if you are not a fantasy fiction fan.

Age Range: 4-10

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