A meditative tale with a homespun feel, best for thoughtful readers.

Kirkus Reviews

A Bear Named Bjorn


Comical and contemplative stories from Bjorn’s forest for early readers.


  • Description

    Bjorn lives in a cave. The walls are soft, the ground is comfortable, and just in front there is new grass and a rough tree, perfect for back-scratching.
    A Bear Named Bjorn takes us into the forest with Bjorn the bear and his friends. One day the animals have their eye tests and try on the humans’ lost spectacles. Another, they just sit, watching the leaves and playing cards on a tree stump. And on party night the animals borrow clothes hanging on the camping ground line—and return everything carefully in the morning, only a little bit used.

    Bjorn’s thoughtful bear logic and small eccentricities are the heart of these mischievous chapters that are by turns contemplative and comical, odes to both nature and “human” nature.

    Winner of the coveted Pepite des Petits prize 2016,  the Montreuil Book Fair ‘Small Ones’ prize 2016 and a White Raven selection 2017.

  • Book Details

    Country of OriginFrance
    Reader Age5-7 year, 6-8 year, 8-12 year
    Book Size

  • Reviews

    1. INIS Magazine, Editor’s Choice

      The dynamic line drawings radiate a friendly, charming energy that makes us connect instantly with the characters. The writing, translated from French, is ideal for animated storytelling…The writing has a gentle tone, tinged with a childlike curiosity, while maintaining a softly satirical approach. These intelligent, thoughtful and funny vignettes are a great way to talk about big themes like friendship and the balance between company, solitude and contentment.

    2. Storysnug

      a wonderful, humorous first chapter book…it’s perfect for an emerging reader. The situations are familiar to a child but the animals’ actions give the stories an original and amusing twist…There are so many elements that make us smile as we read these stories…beautifully illustrated using line drawings that complement the simplicity of the text. Translated from French its short sentences and easy vocabulary make it a wonderful book to read with non native English speakers who will benefit from the picture clues.

    3. Reading Time

      The simple line drawings and handwriting-ish font on mint green pages give it a nostalgic feel, and the characters and stories are incredibly cute … but they’re wryly written so it isn’t at all twee. The humour in this book is softly slapstick and a little bit cynical — gently mocking of humans and their foibles … My boys (7 & 5) have read it several times and still get the giggles at Bjorn and his quirks. It’s a little bit absurdist in its outlook, and they love it … Snuggle up and read it because it’s cute, and because it’s one of those read alouds that can be enjoyed by adults differently. It’s funny to see our follies parodied by a bear. 

    4. Readings

      These gentle, funny stories are perfect for thoughtful beginner readers, and especially animal lovers.

    5. ReadPlus

      A thoughtful, whimsical story that follows the daily adventures of a Bear, Bjorn, who lives quietly in a cave. It is a mixture of animal and human adventures as each of the six chapters reveals another escapade involving the bear and his other animal friends… All these adventures are beautifully illustrated using black line drawings and the book has been published on calming mint-green pages. Best enjoyed by young independent readers or one to one reading at home where the illustrations can be enjoyed along with the story.

    6. NZ Poetry Box, Paula Green

      Even before you start reading you know this book is a treasure…the drawings are like exquisite little poems so I ‘read’ those before I read the story. They have an EH Shephard feel (he drew for AA Milne’s books) but they have their own personality that could only ever belong to Delphine Perret.
      A Bear Named Bjorn got me thinking, but it also got me laughing!…There are lots of ways I am reminded of Winnie the Pooh because this is a book of living, of ordinary everyday life that is full of friendship and wisdom and unexpected things. I love it so much.

    7. The Observer

      There’s a flick of Moomins style to the simple but striking black line drawings, and echoes of Winnie-the-Pooh in the characters’ droll reflections, but Perret has a fresh and funny voice all of her own.

    8. Stephanie Tournas, Youth Services Book Review

      The simple stories are gentle and occasionally funny, with the expected silliness of animals trying to live in a world where human stuff keeps intruding, such as when bear wins a sofa. Spare line drawings on mint green paper lend the book an air of whimsy.

    9. Kirkus Reviews

      French author Perret’s tale is serene, moving along languidly like the calming flow of a brook through the woods. Bits of text reside alongside simply wrought thin, black-line illustrations on cool mint-green pages in this graphic-novel hybrid. While the story itself makes for a pleasant read-aloud, the small-scale, unassuming art may better serve independent readers than groups. Children drawn to quieter animal fare imbued with warm humor and accompanied by a gentle nudge toward nature should find kinship here.

      A meditative tale with a homespun feel, best for thoughtful readers.

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