The Hug by Eoin McLaughlin & Polly Dunbar

The Hug by Eoin McLaughlin & Polly Dunbar
Review Copy from Faber & Faber
Hedgehog is feeling sad, sad enough to ask for a hug. But everyone Hedgehog asks seems to be otherwise occupied. Finally, Hedgehog asks Owl why a hug is so hard to find. Wisely, Owl tells Hedgehog, "You're just a little bit tricky to hug . . . But don't worry, there is someone for everyone." Sure enough, when things seem darkest and Hedgehog is curled in a ball . . . 
Tortoise is feeling sad and needs a hug. But no one seems to have the time (or inclination) to help cheer up a fellow in need. Owl tries to explain this to Tortoise, but things seem to end with a sad retreat into a shell. Until . . .

One side of this flip book tells the story from the point of view of Hedgehog, the other Tortoise. Just when both creatures seem destined to go without hugs, the two tricky types find each other. Each story features one running to the other, arms outstretched in a gloriously uplifting illustration. The centerfold of the book, which calls for a 90 degree turn, shows the two "someones" hugging, "as happy as two someones can be." 

The Hug is simple and sweet and deeply satisfying. So much, you will be flipping this book again and again, just to get to the moment when the two tricky someones find their match - and their hugs.

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