Bear Outside by Jane Yolen, illustrated by Jen Corace
Lots of people have inner strength, but one girl wears hers as a bear outside.
Some folks have a lion inside,
Or a tiger.
I wear my bear on the outside.
In this imaginative picture book by Jane Yolen, acclaimed author of many distinguished children’s books including Owl Moon and How do Dinosaurs Say Goodnight, a girl explores the many ways she expresses herself by imagining that she wears a bear as her personal protective shell. They go everywhere and do everything together. The Bear is like a suit of armor and a partner all in one, protecting her from bullies and giving her strength to be bold when she needs it. In turn, she listens to and takes care of the Bear.
Jane Yolen’s story beautifully portrays the relationships we have with our inner-selves, encouraging readers to stay in touch with and wear these qualities with pride. Her text is paired with the spritely art of Jen Corace, illustrator of bestseller Little Pea, Small World, and Brave Jane Austen.