The Good Bear by Sarah Lean & Ill by Fiona Woodcock


The Good Bear is a warming winter tale that explores our need to connect with loved ones and the wild world around us.

Twelve-year-old Thea dreams of being a writer and is convinced that, if only she had a typewriter, she could write her way into her father’s heart and forge that relationship she deeply craves.

But the story she has plotted out for herself has unexpected twists and turns of its own – like having to accept that her father, Henry, is part of a new family – with girlfriend Inge and her three children – and still as impenetrable as ever, preferring to hide away in his workshop than spend quality time with his daughter.

Thea wraps her disappointment around herself like the potato-brown coat she hates so much, cushioning herself from the bumps and collisions of trying, and failing, to fit in with Henry’s new family and their way of life, which is so different to her own.

Finding solace only in V’s vintage shop and the frozen landscapes of the woods and the wild, Thea’s story takes an entirely new direction when she encounters a bear that is as hurt and out of place as she is herself. Her spiky determination finds a new outlet and soon she is shaking up the whole community in her determination to save her new friend, challenging long-held beliefs about Christmas, family…and bears!

Sarah Lean’s beautiful descriptions of snowy Norway and its Scandi traditions make this book a magical read in the run up to the holiday season, complete with chunky-woollen sweaters, handmade gifts and salt-covered herrings!


Sarah Lean
Fiona Woodcock
Simon & Schuster

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