Monday, April 18, 2016

High Crime and Misdemeanor: The Bear Ate Your Sandwich by Julia Sarcone-Roach

By now I think you know what happened to your sandwich.

But you may not know how it happened.

It seems a black bear woke up from a long sleep, and being rather hungry, he let his nose lead him to the loadbed of a truck. Inside were flats and baskets of delicious berries. So he ate them... or most of them.

And then he lay down right there and fell asleep.

The next thing he knew, he was in a different forest, one with tall concrete and brick cliffs. There were lots of things to climb, and the tall trees with lights on top were good for back-scratching. Someone had left big metal baskets around with all kinds of tasty treats inside.

But the bear sniffed leafy smells, and he followed the scent to a place with interesting objects to explore. Some of them could swing back and forth. Some went around and around. And on one the bear learned to slide down very fast. It was fun, but then he smelled something delicious. The smell was coming from a park bench where there was a lunchbox.

There it was.

Your beautiful and delicious sandwich. All alone.

The bear made his move.

It was such a great sandwich.

But then the bear heard a sniff and a slobbery sound behind him and decided it was time to head back to the other forest.

Blame it on the Bear?

But that's not the whole story. In fact, it's not even the story at all, as the reader learns, in Julia Sarcone-Roach's The Bear Ate Your Sandwich (Alfred A. Knopf, 2015). Author Sarcone-Roach saves the best for last, a small shaggy dog whose big fabrication becomes obvious as he tells his tale to his young mistress.

I saw it all. I tried to save your sandwich. I was able to save this little bit of lettuce here. The bear dropped it as he ran off.

I'm sorry to tell you about your sandwich this way....But now you know....

And so do we all in this doggone tall tale, one that spins out a lengthy face-saving fib for a little dog who is not going to be hungry for quite a while. But with her charming illustrations of town and country, bear and pooch, Sarcone-Roach will leave her readers chuckling and satisfied--except maybe with a sudden craving for a really good sandwich.

"Young readers and listeners will laugh out loud as they closely examine the pictures and find the jokes in this highly interactive urban adventure," says Kirkus.

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