There, There

Let’s just say you are looking for a picture book that children will enjoy and the adult who reads aloud will not be sick of after the thirty- fifth reading. I have such a book for you – There, There, written by Tim Bieser and cleverly illustrated by Bill Slavin.

Hare whines and paces, sick to death of all the rain. Other problems ensue. His friend Bear, in an effort to cheer him up, keeps repeating, “There, there.” As you might imagine, Hare fails to be comforted. 

Eventually, Bear gets enough and drags Hare outdoors to teach him a lesson. He shows him the blind earthworm whose only friend is his other end. Hare gets the message that life could be much worse, and they return inside.

The “lesson” loses its moralizing character as the earthworm, left in his own habitat, reacts to being used in such a fashion. The tongue-in cheek ending will delight the adult as well as the child.