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Cover image for Ant and honey bee : a pair of friends in winter
Ant and honey bee : a pair of friends in winter
Publication Information:
Cambridge, Mass. : Candlewick Press, 2013
Physical Description:
60 p. : col. ill. ; 23 cm.
Reading Level:
480 L Lexile
Added Author:
It's cold outside and time for bugs to hunker down for the winter, but Ant isn't ready to withdraw or be all by herself for months on end without her best friend, Honey Bee, so she braves the cold for one last surprise visit before the snow flies.


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The funny, endearing insect pals find a way to be more than fair-weather friends in a second early chapter book from Megan McDonald and G. Brian Karas.Brrrr! The leaves are off the trees, and frost is on the ground. It's time for bugs to hunker down and hide out for the winter. But Ant isn't ready to hunker down. Ant isn't ready to be all by herself for months on end. The thought of a long chilly season without her best friend, Honey Bee, is enough to make Ant shiver with dread. Can Ant brave the cold for one last surprise visit before the snow flies? And will Honey Bee welcome an interruption of her peace and quiet? The author of the Judy Moody series teams up again with award-winning illustrator G. Brian Karas to show that true friends can weather whatever comes their way - even if one is feeling antsy and the other has blissful hibernation in mind.

Author Notes

Megan McDonald was born February 28, 1959, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She grew up in the 1960s the youngest of five girls - which later became the inspiration of the Sister's Club. She attended Oberlin College and received a B.A. in English, then she went on to receive a Library Science degree at Pittsburgh University in 1986. Before becoming a full-time writer, McDonald had a variety of jobs working in libraries, bookstores, museums, and even as a park ranger.She was children's librarian, working at Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, Minneapolis Public Library and Adams Memorial Library in Latrobe, Pennsylvania. She has received various awards for her storytelling including a Judy Blume Contemporary Fiction Award, a Children's Choice Book award, and a Keystone State Award among others. McDonald has also written many picture books for younger children and continues to write. Her most recent work was the "Julie Albright" series of books for the American public. She currently resides in Sebastopol, California with her husband and pets.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 4

School Library Journal Review

Gr 1-3-It's getting chilly out, and Ant and Honey Bee are settling in for hibernation. But Ant isn't ready to be alone; she braves the cold to visit her pal one last time. Honey Bee is grumpy and resists all of Ant's attempts to cheer her. Eventually, Ant coaxes Honey Bee out of her bad mood as they fix a sandwich with all of the food in the hive. The two buddies then cuddle together for their long winter's nap. This story of friendship is full of puns that will make readers chuckle. The gouache, acrylic, and pencil illustrations add details for children to find (e.g., Bee's newspaper warns of "Killer Bee Attack"). The large font and simple, sometimes repetitive, words ("Ant looked out the window. Gray clouds. Gray sky. Gray trees. Gray earth.") will allow beginning readers to read the story on their own, but it is complex enough for stronger readers to feel accomplished. A solid addition to early chapter-book collections.-Laura Stanfield, Campbell County Public Library, Ft. Thomas, KY (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Horn Book Review

Bored and lonely on a winter day, Ant seeks the companionship of friend Honey Bee, who just wants to be left alone. The three chapters tap into the timeless emotions of childhood in the same spirit as Frog and Toad do. Both the gouache, acrylic, and pencil illustrations and the humorous, endearing text feature delightful details and gags for new readers to spot. (c) Copyright 2014. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Kirkus Review

Winter's arrival leaves sleepy Honey Bee in no mood to entertain her still-antsy friend. Having quickly run through all the possibilities for solitary activities, Ant ignores her bigger buddy's "bee-mail" brushoff and heads out into the "rainy and complain-y" weather to pay a call. Grumpy reception notwithstanding ("Honey Bee sure had her stinger out today"), Ant's relentless persistence ultimately pays off in a cooperatively assembled "peanut-butter-and-jelly sandwich"--actually a bowl of milk with some chips in it--enhanced, "Stone Soup" style, with raisins, maple syrup, goldfish crackers, gummy worms, squeeze cheese, ketchup and even stored-away honey. "It's very antsome," admits Honey Bee. And the towering result makes a perfect final snack before cuddling down on a shared couch for a long winter's nap. McDonald's three-chapter tale offers an entertaining mix of wordplay and amusing back-and-forth conversation--not to mention delicious kitchen antics and, from Karas, cartoon illustrations rich in both visual gags ("Napping House" reads the sign outside Old Man Spider's home) and small but clear cues to the mutual regard lurking under the (four-limbed, but never mind) insect friends' moods. Sure to give recent Henry Mudge grads a happy buzz. (Early reader. 6-8)]] Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Booklist Review

As snow begins to fall, Ant dreads staying indoors all winter, and, besides, she already misses her best friend, a bee. In three chapters, McDonald tells of Ant's difficult trek to Honey Bee's house, her many attempts to please her grumpy friend, and their new plan: first they'll feast; then they'll sleep. Kids will particularly enjoy the bizarre ingredients that go into their Eiffel Tower sandwich. The second title in a charming beginning-reader series, this offers droll humor and a broad emotional range, which Karas captures perceptively in his expressive gouache, acrylic, and pencil illustrations. Satisfying fare for young readers.--Phelan, Carolyn Copyright 2010 Booklist

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