Millicent Withers loves teddy bears and owns her own teddy bear shop. Her granddaughter, Emily is staying with her while her parents are out of the country. The little girl has been very sad and lonely, so Millicent decides to cheer her up by ordering a special, soft, cuddly bear for her. When the package arrives, it doesn't contains the pretty Suzie Snuffles bear they were expecting, but instead they've received a serious, stuffy looking bear named Stuffles B. Snippet. Emily is a little disappointed, but when she discovers the next day that Stuffles is a magical bear who can write messages to her in his little red diary, she knows she's found a new best friend. Emily comes up with the idea of sharing Stuffles with her first-grade class to get them to communicate better and have more fun in class. Stuffles gladly dispenses his gentle wisdom to each student, helping them through some difficult problems and making everyone feel better about themselves in the end.
The Diary of Stuffles B. Snippet is an adorable and heartwarming story of a teddy bear who is far more than he appears to be on the outside. The bear factory made Stuffles into a very serious, stuffy looking bear, which causes him to be lonely and misunderstood, but a little girl named Emily manages to look past that and discovers that he's really a magical bear. Stuffles writes messages to Emily in the little red diary that accompanied him, and she decides to share him and his wisdom with her classmates at school. The project brings all the children closer together and Stuffles is able to give some great advice to kids who are going through some difficult circumstances.
I think this book teaches a valuable lesson about not judging people by what they look like but instead to look deeper into their heart and personality. I love how warm and open Stuffles is in his messages and how he truly wants to help others. Through his gentle advice, he teaches the children about friendship and self-reliance. By the end, everyone feels better for having had Stuffles be a part of their lives for a little while. I was also impressed with the cultural diversity of the children in Emily's class.
While this is a picture book, the text of the story is a little more advanced in both length and word choices. Younger children will probably need some help reading it, but the illustrations are cute and colorful, giving them plenty to catch the eye. Older children will appreciate the more involved story line that also briefly addresses several social issues that kids may face in their lives. Overall, this is a wonderful book that I think any child would enjoy having in their library.
Note: I received a copy of this book from the author via the publicist Bostick Communications in exchange for an honest review.
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