Hare solves his family’s problems by tricking rich and lazy Bear in this funny, energetic version of an old slave story. With roots in American slave tales, Tops & Bottoms celebrates the trickster tradition of using one’s wits to overcome hardship. “As usual, Stevens’ animal characters, bold and colorful, are delightful. . . . It’s all wonderful fun, and the book opens, fittingly, from top to bottom instead of from side to side, making it perfect for story-time sharing.”—Booklist
This title has been selected as a Common Core Text Exemplar (Grades 2-3, Stories)
There’s definitely some nostalgia here for me, but I absolutely love this book! It has its own folksy feel from the original tales, emphasized and added to by the rich illustrations (this is a Caldecott winner after all!) while still being relevant and modern. Is anyone else loving Father Hare’s sweet carrot shirt?! While I don’t necessarily condone Father Hare’s wily business practices, in the spirit of a true folk tale the deserving are fed and the not so deserving learn a lesson… this time about doing your own hard work.