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“A book is the most effective weapon against intolerance and ignorance.”
Summary: The book cheerfully describes different types of hugs and appropriate ways to offer and receive them. Celebrate sharing affection with this picture book.
Type of Reading: bedtime story, playtime reading, easy reader, learning to read, read aloud book, reluctant reader, remedial reader
Recommended Age: read together: 2 to 6; read yourself: 7 to 10
Interest Level: 2 to 7
Reading Level: 2.5
Age of Child: Read with a 3-year-old girl.
Young Reader Reaction: My daughter loves the descriptions and illustrations of hugs. Each time we read the book, the two of us practiced what the book described. I knew from reading it first that my child would love it. She adores animals so the illustrations alone would please her. The content was also enjoyable for her as well.
Adult Reader Reaction: I like the conversations I had with my 3-year-old after reading this book. I especially liked the page with the skunk that reads, "If you don't want a hug, it's okay to say no." My daughter isn't a very affectionate child and is often scorned by adults who wish to hug her when she does not feel like doing so.
Pros: The illustrations and the lessons offered (never hug anyone who is angry) are the most significant pros for me.
Borrow or Buy: Borrow. This is a book that will be enjoyed a few times in a short period of time. It probably isn't one you'll come back to again and again. It would be an excellent book for a preschool classroom, though.
Educational Themes: Hugs are easy for kids to understand, and the story helps start the conversation about "reading" a situation before making a decision. The story has significant social themes that have been helpful for my child and her interactions with peers in particular.
Notes: The publisher donated a copy of this book knowing that we would consider it for review and provide an independent, unbiased profile. This book will be given to a nonprofit to help readers in need.
Literary Categories: Fiction - picture book, emotions, family
Date(s) Reviewed: May 2015
Other Reviews: See Critics' Reviews and reader feedback at amazon.com and barnesandnoble.com.