Sunday, December 22, 2019

I Want My Hat Back

I Want My Hat Back
by Jon Klassen
Recommended Ages: 4+

Here is a perfectly structured children's book that uses subtle variants of a few simple pictures, rearrangements of a few well-chosen words, and a clever hint of what isn't directly shown or stated, to pull laughter, irony and charm out of a silly tale of a bear searching the woods for his lost hat.

As it clues very little readers, perhaps for the first time, into the concept of incriminating yourself by protesting your innocence too much, it may also be just the thing to cheer up a child frustrated about losing a favorite hat, toy or whatever.

This picture book was one of the selections for my local public library's "Leaders are Readers" program. The debut book by a Canadian author, it was followed up by the Caldecott and Kate Greenaway medal-winning This Is Not My Hat and, later, We Found a Hat. Klassen is also the co-author with Mac Barnett of a children's picture book titled Square.

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