The Bear Who Went to War

£11.99

Do you know that story of Wotjek? I didn’t. He is ‘The Bear Who Went to War‘. Peter keeps Wotjek, an abandoned bear cub. He feeds him and persuades his sergeant that Wotjek must stay with his platoon. Wotjek bonds with Peter and his comrades. They find his size, strength and loyalty are an advantage to their safety and morale.

The company moves from the Soviet Union, where their Polish unit has been evacuated, to Italy. Wotjek is Private 40961. He carries crates of weaponry and achieves an heroic status with civilians. What happens when the company moves onto Scotland? When Peter’s homesickness urges him to leave his ursine companion for the first time in years?

Wotjek’s story is sad, moving and heroic. I love the steady pace of Alan Pollock’s storytelling that demand the reader takes time to look and think. Bryony Thomson’s wide landscape pictures suggest loneliness, fear and bravery.

Description

The Bear Who Went to War

Alan Pollock, illustrated by Bryony Thomson

(Old Barn Books)- hardback

Peter discovers ‘The Bear Who Went to War‘ as an abandoned cub He feeds him water and bread. Peter’s sergeant agrees that Peter’s patrol might keep and raise the cub. The cub becomes Wotjek, a giant bear, sleeping at Peter’s feet and protecting the unit from intruders. Wotjek’s future is a concern at the outbreak of war. Where will he go?

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