It was a fun surprise when I was gifted a copy of Emma Rattray’s book The Rug Bear. We are really into bedtime reading (and afternoon reading) in our home, so new books quickly become favourites being toted from room-to-room for reading sessions.
The first night it arrived, we three snuggled up in Bee’s bed for bedtime stories and started reading.
They were immediately captivated by Michael Terry’s illustrations. They’d point out a detail and be so excited to have spotted the little bees or the peeking fox. It was adorable. Honestly, it also worried me because they were pretty observant and excited for bedtime hour. But the cosiness and softness of the story swirled in their heads and calmed them soon enough.
The tale itself is simple, but so good. Bear is playing hide-and-seek in the first with his friends Fox and Lion. But he got tired, as you do, from the day of playing, so he settled down for a little rest… and fell asleep. But Bear gets a surprise when he wakes up. In addition to sharing, kindness, and friendship, this story also helps show that the world keeps going when we are asleep.
The Rug Bear was such an instant hit with my sons that it made photographing them reading harder. To them, I was getting in the way of their reading. Even at just four years old and not knowing how to read, Bee makes his way through the story with the illustrations as his guide.
I was really struck by the message of The Rug Bear. Emma Rattray’s book reminds me that kindness perseveres and we each have it in our grasp to create a kinder environment through our own actions and supporting others in our community.
The Rug Bear is available at