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Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 09/01/2013 There are countless picture books about misplaced toys, but this one reveals a little-known secret: where toys go when they’re lost. A boy and a bear and a blanket are inseparable, ever since the boy’s birth—until one day, bear and blanket are left behind on a ship. The boy is beside himself, but the bear and blanket, in a dreamlike sequence, sail off to “an island / of lost blankets and bears, / living in retirement, / without worries or cares.” Although the bear king tells the duo to forget the boy, they don’t listen, setting off to search, presumably for many years. When they find him, he’s older and doing just fine. This is a poignant story of growing up and letting go (think The Velveteen Rabbit), both for boys and toys. The rhyming text feels somewhat at odds with the magical quality of the soft acrylic illustrations, which are nostalgic in feel and at their best when it’s just bear and blanket on the page. Still, it’s reassuring, isn’t it? To imagine an old friend surrounded by pals? - Copyright 2013 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 12/01/2013 PreS-Gr 1—Kelly gives lost possessions a new life in his first book. At first, the stuffed brown bear and the fuzzy white blanket are loved by a boy. They keep him company and give him a sense of security. When they are separated on a voyage, each longs to find the other. As time passes, though, the bear realizes the boy has new interests (baseball and friends) and he decides to make a new home on the Island of Lost Blankets and Bears. In this land, toys pass the time by playing and telling stories about their former owners. Tanaka's paintings are almost otherworldly. The bears have human personalities and behaviors, and the scenery appears covered in a misty light. The message is heartfelt and it may comfort children who are missing their favorite toys.—Tanya Boudreau, Cold Lake Public Library, AB, Canada - Copyright 2013 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.