Meet KarmaKarma's Many BooksComing UpKarma's BlogPhoto Album
School VisitsFeatures for TeachersParents' PlaceKids CornerContact Karma

Back to Good Karma

Welcome Friends! Here is a place for teachers, parents, librarians and writers to learn what's going on in the world of book author Karma Wilson.

Leaves! A book for fall.

Leaves by David Ezra Stein is my favorite new book for fall.  It’s a great companion piece for my book Bear Snores On.

This book, written in soft, sweet prose and illustrated with a style reminiscent of Ernest H. Shepherd, is a poignant ode to Autumn.

In the unpretentious story a Bear lives on a small island. He is quite content and happy until….the leaves start to fall from the trees. This concerns our friend bear, which is shown perfectly in charming text and art. “He tried to catch them and put them back on . . . but it was not the same.”  Mr. Stein does a remarkable job of keeping the uncomplicated plot just simple enough.  Everything–storyline, character and text–is conveyed with an air of innocence that children will relate to and adults will find themselves yearning for.


Instead of going to great lengths to solve the mystery of the falling leaves, the bear just does what bears do–he grows sleepy and gathers piles of leaves to line his cave for hibernation.  Then he sleeps.  Swirls of wind whisk away the leaves and usher in winter storms. A few non-hibernating animals make cameo appearances while the bear sleeps (a hare, red cardinal and fox).  Spring returns, and the bear wakes. As he frolics in the warmth of the sun the bear feels the budding leaves are welcoming him.

I believe the spare prose is perfectly framed by enchantingly minimalist pen and ink illustrations. Colors of fall abound–burnt oranges, auburns, muted yellows and glimpses of a grey-blue sky imbued with the sun’s golden glow. If there is one word to describe this contribution to children’s literature it would be “gentle”.  I love Leaves–pick up a copy at a bookstore near you.