'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Sunday 26 December 2021

Review: I Need A Hug

Little porcupine just wants a hug. That’s all! She politely asks rabbit, moose and bear if they’ll oblige but each one of them runs away from her prickly exterior.   

I need a hug, will you cuddle me, Lou?

What? With those spikes? Get away from me! Shoo!

When the three unwilling huggers are chased by a snake, porcupine inadvertently meets a friend who’s willing to wrap not just arms but a whole body around her in a friendly hug.

The simplicity of this picture book belies a deeper message, which is that the notions of friendship and family (in all its forms), can be forged and nurtured in unlikely places.

A sparse picture book with definitive colour backgrounds and evocative characters, this story is one of – dare I use the buzzword of the noughties – resilience!

It’s a salient reminder that even those who appear scary, need to connect emotionally and physically with others. It illustrates that expressing your needs might feel prickly and difficult, but that it’s an important thing to do.

Mostly, I Need A Hug is about not giving up even when the odds seem stacked against you. Because sometimes, you just need to remain open to the surprise and great mystery of life.

Title: I Need A Hug
Author/Illustrator: Aaron Blabey
Publisher: Scholastic, $9.99
Publication Date: 2015
Format: Hardback
ISBN: 9781743837887
For ages: 1 – 7 years old
Type: Picture Book