A Boy and A Bear in a Boat

A Boy and A Bear in a Boat A boy and a bear go to sea equipped with a suitcase a comic book and a ukulele The bear assures the boy that they are traveling a short distance and it really shouldn t take very long But then they

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  • Title: A Boy and A Bear in a Boat
  • Author: Dave Shelton
  • ISBN: 9780385752480
  • Page: 417
  • Format: Hardcover
  • A boy and a bear go to sea, equipped with a suitcase, a comic book, and a ukulele The bear assures the boy that they are traveling a short distance and it really shouldn t take very long But then they encounter unforeseeable anomalies turbulent stormy seas a terrifying sea monster and the rank remains of The Very Last Sandwich The odds are pitted against the boy anA boy and a bear go to sea, equipped with a suitcase, a comic book, and a ukulele The bear assures the boy that they are traveling a short distance and it really shouldn t take very long But then they encounter unforeseeable anomalies turbulent stormy seas a terrifying sea monster and the rank remains of The Very Last Sandwich The odds are pitted against the boy and the bear and their boat Will the Harriet, their trusted vessel, withstand the violent lashings of the salty waves And will anyone ever answer their message in a bottle

    One thought on “A Boy and A Bear in a Boat”

    1. This is a book aimed at 8-11 year olds, and I suspect, boys. However the essentially existentialist narrative may attract an older audience who would see it as a metaphor for life and experience. In simple terms it is about a boy and a bear on a boat. There is no explanation why, where or when and the ending is left open. The bear, (the captain) does not always inspire confidence, they experience various anomalies and unexplained problems but, but together they struggle on. For me the strongest [...]

    2. It's fiendishly hard to know what to make of this one. It's bold and audacious, and I don't think it entirely works, but it's hard not to admire its courage.This is a 300-page book with only two characters. Neither is given a name; they are only referred to as Boy and Bear. The plot is maddeningly obscure in almost all its essential points. The Boy, for reasons left entirely unexplained, asks the Bear to row him across an unnamed body of water, to a destination identified only as "the other side [...]

    3. Of all the Carnegie shortlisted books, A Boy and A Bear in a Boat is the one aimed at the youngest audience. It is a deceptively simple tale and the nuts and bolts of the plot are pretty much covered by the title. It’s the sort of book that reviewers would say raises a smile, call ‘charming’ or ‘quirky’ and then not even contemplate garlanding with the highest accolades. Yet there is more to Dave Shelton’s tale than this. As young an audience as this is aimed at, it is arguably the m [...]

    4. It seemed to be just one episode of a longer story so it didn't have a proper beginning or ending, it was all just part of the middle. There was no way of knowing what had gone on before or what would happen after. And, actually, the boy didn't have much of a clue about what was going on now.Is it possible to write a simple, abstract fable largely about a character being bored that is not itself boring? That's the question I kept asking myself as I read this book. For a large part of the story n [...]

    5. This is one of the slowest, least interesting, most boring kids' books I've read. Those attributes are even more pronounced and disappointing because the cover leads one to expect an exciting adventure. The illustrations are excellent, and I would love to read a picture book by Shelton, but I don't think I'll be recommending his novel to anyone. It felt much like a text you'd be required to read for a college philosophy class, not like a novel aimed at middle schoolers and it held my attention a [...]

    6. Я тут в тихом восторге. Шикарная книга, не понимаю почему на гр такой низкий рейтинг. Хотя, если подумать, то она не для понимания всех. Слишком тонок юмор (обожаю такое), ирония (вагон) и слишком напряжно искать смысл. Но он там есть. Нужно только включить мозги. Хочу издание се [...]

    7. It's hard not to be bored by a book that keeps telling us how bored the boy is. I can't be bothered to try, no matter how much I liked the cover.

    8. A boy on his own seeks to cross a body of water from a bear in a small boat. The bear is very proud of his boat and assures the boy that the crossing will take no time at all. Unfortunately, "unforeseeable anomalies" occur and the crossing takes much longer than expected. I was looking forward to reading this book when I read the description. I thought it would be a quick, fun, and light read that I would be able to recommend to reluctant middle-grade readers. It was a quick and light read, but [...]

    9. A boy approaches a bear in a boat and asks how long it will take to get "just to the other side". Well, apparently longer than a three-hour tour, because the bear runs into "unforseen anomalies". The duo drift for days and days, subsisting on bizarre sandwiches and, since this is a British author, tea. They run into storms and giant sea monsters, have to catch fish, and end up on a weirdly antique ship after their smaller boat floats away. When that, too, is destroyed, the two sail off into the [...]

    10. I feel as if I should review this in some way, and I don't exactly know how to review it. This was a read aloud with my 5.5 year old. I sort of ended up getting it 'accidentally', i.e I thought I had ordered other things on hold, but this was one of the ones that came in and once he'd seen it he was interested. It's a very quiet story in many ways, moving from mundane event to somewhat less mundane event, and without a clear-cut ending. Another reviewer said Joe Vs. the Volcano, and I can see th [...]

    11. There’s a boy, and a bear, and they are on a boat. No, not “on a boat”. Actually, more kind of in a boat. A rowboat. Named Harriet.Bears are not cuddly. They are ferocious wild animals that really just want to be left alone, to roam through the wild and eat fish and have bear sex. So I’m not quite sure how we went from bears mauling people to teddy bears and anthropomorphic bears who wear boots or hang around with that Christopher Robin kid. I wonder if there is a middle, transition stat [...]

    12. I loved this book, although it is about as quirky as they come and, I suspect, will not appeal to everyone. Just as the title says, it is about a boy and a bear in a boat. Nothing more, nothing less. Why they are in the boat, where the boy was trying to go, why a bear is piloting this boat.well, none of that is explained. Even though this is a children's book, I think many adults will enjoy it as much, if not more, than the middle grade readers at which it is aimed. As an adult, I kept looking a [...]

    13. I read this because a teacher told me her class of 9-10 year olds loved it and they spent a whole term on the book. I loved it too but can't explain why, it has a mysterious property. A bit like 'Life of Pi' for children without the backstory. The teacher used it for her philosophy sessions and found the children were interested in speculating what the book was meant to be about. Lots came out about the nature of relationships, in particular unequal friendships and interdependence. I also imagin [...]

    14. 2.5 actuallyA note I made half way through: "Reviews and awards suggest premier league. And I suppose it is. But it's more Leicester versus Hull than United versus Arsenal. It's good, but it's much better if you come from Leicesteror Hull. (on page 150 of 304) "I hoped it would get better. It didn't. In fact I came to realise I had put it a couple of divisions higher than it merits. (But so have a lot of other people!). If you aren't expecting much then it's an OK story. If you're looking for pr [...]

    15. One of the most debated books on this year's Carnegie shortlist! I was familiar with Dave Shelton from his excellent comic Good Dog, Bad Dog so looked forward to reading it and I loved it. Yes it's beyond weird and I'm not sure how it would go down with children (am currently testing with a colleague's grandchildren) but I loved it. A boy wants to go "just over to the other side" and gets into a boat captained by a bear who at first appears to be a competent seafarer, though fairly rapidly we re [...]

    16. I honestly feel sorry for any kid who has the misfortune to read this book. This book claimed it was ORIGINAL and ENTERTAINING (emphasis not mine) - it was not. HILARIOUS - it was not.With illustrations TO DIE FOR - nope.If you get given this book you are LUCKY. Share it aloud: BLESSED - HELL no (emphasis mine).Own it: others are JEALOUS - *strangled noises*No story line, detestable characters (especially the boy) and, if that wasn't enough, the BLOODY WRITING. The author clearly thought the abu [...]

    17. This is an odd little book for sure. Shelton's illustrations have some of the whimsy of Peggy Fortnum's classic drawings of Paddington Bear, but the story of this unnamed ursine and lad, though grounded in a wealth of specific physical detail, is almost certainly too amorphous for most children's taste. The book plainly operates at a symbolic level, but it's not as obvious about at it as, say, Jonathan Livingstone Seagull or The Old Man and the Sea. It's like an unlikely meeting of Paddington an [...]

    18. Utterly lovely, odd and really rather magical. This book is firstly drop dead gorgeous at first sight (and was winner of the 2013 Kitschies Inky Tentacle cover award). The insides don't disappoint either. The story is simple, slow and loveable (a bit like the bear himself) and draws you into its own little world effortlessly. The purposeful lack of detail gives it a dreamlike quality and a feeling of being as lost as the characters in the story. All floating on a sea of well-chosen words and gor [...]

    19. 3 1/2 stars. This book is aptly titled. "Waiting for Godot" came to mind as I read it aloud to my 9 year old. While the plot is thin on excitement, the story does offer up some very good dialogue between the boy and the bear. And the bear had some great one-liners that made us laugh out loud. ("Do you think it was something he ate?" said the bear.) Funny stuff. We really liked some parts but not enough parts to give it 4 stars. And we were left wanting a little bit more of an ending. It was hard [...]

    20. Really sweet book. I loved how the spirit of it was so positive. They didn't always know where they were going or what they were doing but they just ploughed on. I had fun finding possible metaphors for what the adventures represented. In contrast I also thought that the brutalness and cruelty of life was expressed really well.A great adventure story for children, and a lovely book for older readers.

    21. Basically, everything you need to know about this book is written in the title: there’s a boy and a bear, and they’re in a boat. There’s a lot of boredom and hunger, and endless rowing on the way to somewhere. The thing I liked most was The Very Last Sandwich. I definitely should have done my research before picking this up, though. Apparently the whole book is a metaphor for life. Interesting concept, but BORING.

    22. I don't know what it was about this story, but I just couldn't get into it. The illustrations were awesome and the humor was great, but I just had to push myself to finish it. Maybe it was too existential for my personal taste or I wasn't in the right place for it, but I just was not feeling this book. I would normally put it at 2 stars, but in this case I don't think it's fair to the author. This book just may not be my cup of tea

    23. The kind of book you can put down and pick up after a few weeks for another chapter with a kiddo. My 9yo had to stop reading a couple times tonight because he giggled so much that he got the hiccups. So that'll be worth some stars right there.

    24. Fantastic book. 'Life of Pi' crossed with 'Waiting for Godot' for children. Possibly the coolest kids' book cover design ever on this hardback edition. Not surprised they chose a different approach for the paperback though :-)

    25. First off, I like it.I think it's important to make that note right upfront. Particularly since I'm probably going to break out terms like "bizarre", "peculiar", "odd", "weird", and "eerily strange" (or "strangely eerie" depending on my mood) when describing this book. I will undoubtedly be simultaneously inclined to warn you off of the whole enterprise while luring you in with terms like "artful writing" and "deft turns of phrase". I think that it is safe to say that A Boy and a Bear in a Boat [...]

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