"Michael," said Karl. "There's a really big bear in the backyard." This is how three children meet Stillwater, a giant panda who moves into the neighborhood and tells amazing tales. To Addie he tells a story about the value of material goods. To Michael he pushes the boundaries of good and bad. And to Karl he demonstrates what it means to hold on to frustration. With graceful art and simple stories that are filled with love and enlightenment, Jon Muth and Stillwater the bear present three ancient Zen tales that are sure to strike a chord in everyone they touch.
Stillwater, a panda with a calm, Buddha-like demeanor (and appealingly chubby physique) moves into the neighborhood, bringing companionship and wisdom to two brothers and a sister. In translucent watercolor scenes, their friendship unfolds amid shared tea and cake, paper airplanes, and Stillwater's gentle retelling of three Zen tales. Not for Buddhists only, this beautifully written and illustrated story touches ever-so-lightly on universal themes such as forgiveness, acceptance, and generosity. (ages 6 to 8)
Child magazine's Best Children's Book Awards 2005