Bea by the Sea by Jo Byatt
Bea loves lions and knows everything there is to know about them. She lives by the beach, but she doesn't like sand one little bit! One day, her mother persuades her to visit the beach, where she meets a sand sculpture of a lion who is afraid of water. Their developing friendship helps each of them to overcome their anxieties, but the next day the lion has disappeared! How will Bea cope? A funny and tender book about the mutual support of friendship, the acceptance of loss, and the resilience needed to accept change.