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A Perfect Day

4.02  ·  Rating details ·  1,773 ratings  ·  392 reviews
Today is a perfect day for Cat, Dog, Chickadee, and Squirrel.

Cat is lounging among the daffodils. Dog is sitting in the wading pool, deep in the cool water. Chickadee is eating fresh seed from the birdfeeder. Squirrel is munching on his very own corncob. Today is a perfect day in Bert's backyard.

Until Bear comes along, that is. Bear crushes the daffodils, drinks the pool w
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published February 14th 2017 by Roaring Brook Press
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Average rating 4.02  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,773 ratings  ·  392 reviews

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Mar 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
Happiness is often unexpected and sometimes short-lived, but we all find our perfect day in our own way. Love the whorls, swirls, and lines in the illustrations in this short and sweet tale.
Laura Harrison
Feb 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: omg-cant-wait
How I love Lane Smith. One of the truly and consistently great children's book author/illustrators of our time. A cute story about a variety of animals having a great day until Bear comes along. The illustrations are warm, lush and glorious. You really have to see the book in person to appreciate it. Positively enchanting. ...more
Mar 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Chickadees, squirrels, bird feeders, and a bear! Oh my!
4.5 out of 5

Lane Smith's simple, whimsical, and immensely satisfying story, which celebrates simple joys of life and introduces the concept of different perspectives, is masterfully told through succinct, repetitive text and richly textured mixed-media illustrations:

There is so much to celebrate about A Perfect Day:
-colors (somehow they manage to appear both muted AND vibrant);
-texture (you can almost FEEL that fur);
-expressions (that squirrel cracks me up, and the bear's giddiness is simply con
Dec 20, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
I am not the first, nor will I be the last to say this is a practically perfect picture book.

Surely one of the greats of 2017.
Katt Hansen
Dec 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
A hot summer day and everyone is having a perfect day - until Bear comes along. And then it becomes HIS perfect day.

With a story that is pleasant and light, you might be surprised at how deep a story like this can be. Read this one with your child and invite them to discuss their perfect day, and what they do when they feel like their perfect day is spoiled. There's a lot here about expectations and reality, and accepting change.

But better than that, is the artwork which suits the story so well
Jun 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A bear's visit to a certain backyard bird feeder disrupts EVERYONE'S perfect day . . .


. . . except for the bear's, of course!


Smith's artwork is simply sublime! I LOVED this one! A Perfect Day is a perfect book in every way.
Jul 10, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: to-enjoy-again
Because Lane Smith, and reviews.
3.5 stars rounded down, because imo it's not as amazing as the hype. Clever, yes. Original, sorta. Lane Smith does know how to defy expectations. I like how the child, Bert, is *friend* to the animals, not pet owner or patron, and how he feeds both birds and squirrel. The art is so warm and joyful, without being gaudy. Good for kids who are tired of 'sweet' books, but whose parents' don't appreciate Battle Bunny.
Nov 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: childrens
I really like the textures and soft colored illustrations in this book. The story is about how a cat, dog, chickadee, and a squirrel were all having a perfect day. Then a bear enters the scene and whimsically delights in what made such a perfect day for the other animals.

" The warmth of the sun. The cool of the water. A belly full of corn and seed. A flower bed for a nap. It was a perfect day for bear."
Sara Grochowski
What begins as perfect day for many - including a cat, a dog, a bird, and a squirrel - soon turns to disarray as a bear lumbers onto the scene. Through this visually striking book, readers will discover that perfection and the things that bring joy may not be the same for all.
tracy lou
Mar 11, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-books
Cute animals, but nothing to write home about.
Jul 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: parents reading with their younger children
The gorgeous textured paintings in this book are really the cat's meow. We are big fans of Lane Smith's creative works, first becoming fans through his collaborations with Jon Scieszka.

The narrative of this story includes descriptions of 'the perfect day' for five different animals and the last one is very humorous and wraps up the book nicely.

Along with his biographical information on the back book flap, Mr. Smith added a photo that shows a glimpse into his inspiration for this story. I loved
Edward Sullivan
Feb 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
A perfect day for bear means spoiling it for all the other critters in Bert's backyard. Superb illustrations, great narrative pacing, and a delightfully humorous introduction to the concept of point of view. ...more
Dec 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2017
Can we please talk about this book? Can we gush about the art's texture that made me want to rub my hands all over each page? DON'T EVEN GET ME STARTED ON THE CORN IN THE COB IN THE BEAR'S MOUTH. DON'T EVEN. DON'T DO IT. ...more
Chance Lee
May 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-it
Cute story that illustrates the subtle shift between "was" as a word that is past tense but means that something within the narrative is currently happening, and "was" as a word that means something in the past that is over. ...more
Lisa D
Feb 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Loved it! A terrific spring book! Love this author!
Michelle (FabBookReviews)
Just look at happy Bear on the cover! Sniffing beautiful flowers, lounging on the grass and enjoying the sunshine- what could be wrong?! In bestselling and award-winning Lane Smith's funny and terrifically timed A Perfect Day, readers get a look at multiple animals' perspectives of what makes for their idea of a perfect day.

A Perfect Day starts off with Cat enjoying some colourful flowers and Dog enjoying the feel of cool water, followed by a few other adorable animals having their own ultimate
Bruce Gargoyle
I received a copy of this title from PanMacmillan Australia for review.

Ten Second Synopsis:
As a collection of animals and one young boy go about an ordinary day, they all seem to find the one thing that makes them most happy. Until, that is, a big hairy bear comes along to spoil the perfection.

Muster up the motivation because...

...this is one picture book that proves that perfection depends entirely on perspective. The beautiful pastel palette of the illustrations reinforces the gentle unfolding
Suzanne LaPierre
Reviewed for School Library Journal:

PreS-Gr 1 –An enjoyable afternoon is upended by an unexpected visitor in this charming book by the beloved children’s writer and illustrator. It was the perfect day for young Bert, his cat basking in the sunshine, his dog frolicking in a plastic pool, a chickadee enjoying the birdseed—even a squirrel was relishing a corncob. Then a bear lumbers onto the scene and—well, it WAS a perfect day. The simple tale combines the elements of repetition and surprise for a
First sentence: The warmth of the sun...felt good on Cat's back. Cat liked to be in the flower bed where the daffodils grew. It was a perfect day for Cat. The cool of the water was what Dog liked best. When it was hot, Dog sat in the wading pool that his friend Bert filled for him. It was a perfect day for Dog.

Premise/plot: A Perfect Day is a near-perfect look at differing perspectives. Cat. Dog. Chickadee. Squirrel. Readers meet them one by one. Not everyone will have a perfect day....all day.
Mar 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
On a sunny day, all of the creatures are having a perfect day. Cat can feel the sun on her back as she walks in the daffodils. Dog is sitting in the cool water in his wading pool. Bert, a little boy, fills the birdfeeder and Chickadee enjoys the seeds. Down below, Squirrel is trying to reach the birdfeeder and Bert gives him corn to enjoy. Everyone is having a perfect day. Until Bear arrives.

This book is incredibly simple and exceedingly perfect itself. Smith uses only a few short sentences to t
Mid-Continent Public Library
Today is the perfect day for everyone, Cat, Dog, Chickadee, and even Squirrel! Until Bear comes along. He squishes all the flowers, eats all the birdseed, and drinks all the water! But it’s still Bear’s perfect day! Take this chance to discuss with your little one what their perfect day might look like, or maybe how Bear could have done a few things a little differently. Enjoy this one now by checking out a copy on or searching for it on Overdrive! – Reviewed by Stephanie at MCPL Read ...more
Dec 20, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: year-1
I enjoyed this book. Very simple plot to follow. I liked how the author put some words in bold when necessary to highlight the tense and importance of the word in the sentence. The illustrations were simple but effective. I think this book is very relaxing to read and would be good for children to read at the end of the day. I would recommend this book.
Mar 15, 2017 rated it liked it
I'd have to use this book as an introduction to perspective, with discussion questions. Is Bear being a bully? Or is he just not thinking about how he's making others feel?

It's cute, but didn't leave me feeling great at the end.
Mar 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: pbf-cats, pbf-dogs
I loved this book. I loved the colors and the textures of the illustrations, with a very simple, but symmetrical story. And the final picture made me chuckle, as all the misplaced animals stare out at the very content bear.
May 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
This book is so cute. This will be great to read with kinder. The illustrations are absolutely gorgeous (Caldecott committee, I'm looking at you) and I think young readers will enjoy the story as well. This would work well for introducing predictions while reading. All around good choice. ...more
Christina Reid
Jul 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
4.5 stars. This book made me chuckle and left me with a warm feeling. The illustrations are fantastic and so full of expressiveness that you can really relate to how each animal is feeling. Gorgeous picture book!
Nov 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
A very simple picture book...but so beautifully illustrated. It's a perfect day for a chickadee, a dog, a cat,and a squirrel...until a bear comes along. The illustrations are lovely! And it is a nice reminder to notice the lovely things around us that make our days "perfect". ...more
Dec 30, 2017 rated it liked it
This book is about how it’s the perfect day for various creatures, but then bear comes along and ruins things to make it the perfect day for him.
Robbi Caldwell
Apr 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: h-books, c-books
We all thought his one was pretty funny! 😊
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Smith was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma, but moved to Corona, California at a young age. He spent summers in Tulsa, however, and cites experiences there as inspirations for his work, saying that "[o]nce you've seen a 100-foot cement buffalo on top of a donut-stand (sic) in the middle of nowhere, you're never the same."

He studied art in college at the encouragement of his high school art teacher, helping

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