April 24, 2018

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Finding Winnie: The True Story of the World’s Most Famous Bear by Lindsay Mattick | SLJ Audio Review

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redstarMattick, Lindsay. Finding Winnie: The True Story of the World’s Most Famous Bear. 1 CD. 15 min. Recorded Books. Apr. 2016. $15.75. ISBN 9781501923593. digital download.Finding Winnie by Lindsay Mattick

K-Gr 3 –This story of the bear who inspired Winnie the Pooh is sure to find a home in the hearts of listeners worldwide. Mattick’s great-grandfather, Harry Colebourn, was a veterinarian who cared for horses in the Second Canadian Infantry Brigade during World War I. While traveling east by train across Canada from his home in Winnipeg on the first leg of his journey as a soldier, Harry paid a trapper $20 for a baby bear and named her Winnie after his home province. The bear traveled as Harry’s companion across the ocean to England and trained with him until it was time for Harry to head to the front line in France. It was then that Harry made the difficult decision to give Winnie a new home—the London Zoo. That is where, as Mattick so aptly says, “sometimes you have to let one story end so the next one can begin.” Christopher Robin Milne, A.A. Milne’s son, discovered Winnie at the zoo and became enamored with her. The rest, as they say, is history. Erin Moon’s narration is lovely and winsome, honoring the compassion inherent in this piece of history. VERDICT Just as Colebourn’s “heart made up his mind,” listeners should follow their hearts and seek out this book, which is sure to have wide appeal. [“Children everywhere will enjoy this tale for years. A must-have”: SLJ 8/15 starred review of the Little, Brown book.]–Terri Perper, Olney Elementary School, Olney, MD

This review was published in the School Library Journal August 2016 issue.