Hello, friends! Our book today is Loved To Bits by Teresa Heapy and Katie Cleminson, a precious tale of the life of a beloved stuffed animal.
In pleasantly-flowing rhyme, the young narrator introduces his stuffed bear, Stripy Ted. Stripy Ted doesn’t leave the boy’s bed anymore; you see, once upon a time he was a plush stuffed bear with golden stripes, and he and the boy did absolutely everything together. Fighting dragons, traveling the seven seas, exploring ruins, and making daring escapes – nothing was too exciting or dangerous for this duo. As their adventures unfold, however, Stripy Ted begins show his wear: a popped eye button, a missing ear, and eventually each of his four limbs. Even his stripes turn from gold to a faded brown. He takes each of these injuries with chipper positively, but soon even the boy must admit that Ted is no longer suited for their wild adventures. However, when the boy’s mother asks if she should mend Ted, he is quick to decline: Ted doesn’t mind his injuries, and is now the perfect size for cuddling at bedtime, and keeping his boy company through the long night.
Absolutely adorable. Most little ones have their own version of Stripy Ted (JJ’s is a battered fellow named Cuddle Fox), and readers of all ages will immediately recognize the special bond between the main character and his lovey. It’s this, plus the classic look of the dreamy storybook illustrations, that give this book a timeless feel. The premise seems oddly grotesque, but the hilariously nonchalant attitude of Ted (“‘Tis but a scratch!” he declares after one injury, a delightful nod to the adult audience) prevent the tone from being anything but light, warm, and sentimental. And easy to see why – Ted is based on the author’s son’s own well-loved bear. The length is perfect, the story sublime, and JJ and I both loved it. Baby Bookworm approved!
(Note: A copy of this book was provided to The Baby Bookworm by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.)