Dorémus’ Bear Despair Among New York Times’ Best Illustrated Children’s Books

November 14, 2012 | By French Culture
Bear Despair by Gaétan Dorémus

A frustrated bear goes in search of his teddy bear in Gaétan Dorémus’ irreverent children’s tale Bear Despair, which the New York Times has just named one of its 10 Best Illustrated Children’s Books of 2012.  The story dispenses with “tiresome morals,” and “goes straight to the frustration and rage of a brisk session on an analyst’s couch,” writes Publisher’s Weekly.  Dorémus’ cross-hatched lines both bunch together into tense, thick forms and fade into an almost ethereal transparency, lending his figures a sense of constant movement and metamorphosis.  Moreover, as we follow the bear through his increasingly desperate and absurd adventures, Dorémus finds innovative ways of telling this strange story, at one moment showing us a cross-section of the bear’s stomach full with a recent victim while he contemplates his next move.

Gaétan Dorémus will be on in the U.S. in early December as part of the French Embassy's French Authors on Tour program. Visit his website:


Publisher's Weekly
New York Times Best Illustrated 2012

Bear Despair is available in U.S. bookstores.