The Berenstain Bears: The Wonderful Scents of Christmas

HarperCollins. Sept. 2022. 24p. Tr $10.99. ISBN 9780063024397.
PreS-Gr 3–Clove-studded oranges, cinnamon, and pine are among the twelve different scratch-and-sniff seasonal scents in this “Berenstain Bears” wintery tale. Although the fragrance palette featured here pulls from a narrow North American definition of “Christmas scents,” some of the deeper cuts like “roasted chestnuts” could broaden a young reader’s sense of smell. The story itself is merely a vehicle for introducing the odors and does nothing to expand beyond the series’ stereotypical gendered roles for Mama Bear, who bakes cookies and decorates the mantel, and Papa Bear, who chops a Christmas tree.
VERDICT Aside from the novelty of sniffable pages, this book has little else to offer.

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