Pug Hug

Pug Hug
Zehra Hicks
Hodder Children’s Books

We first see Pug standing at the window looking out as his young owner departs for school.

Seemingly the dog is desperate for a hug. The trouble is no matter which animal he approaches, not a single one wants to hug.

Cat doesn’t like hugs, Hamster is too difficult to catch, Rabbit is busy chomping,

hugging a goldfish doesn’t really work. Maybe a parrot will oblige; but no, all he receives to his request is amusement at his efforts to please.

Lots of the potential huggers are fast asleep and it appears as though our hug seeker is about to give up in despair. But then he gets an offer, he definitely CAN refuse – and fast …

Will Pug ever have that elusive huggy moment he so much desires, and if so from what source?

Zahra’s smudgy, superbly expressive illustrations showing in particular, Pug’s entreaties, are enough to make any human – even those like this reviewer who isn’t a dog fan – feel like embracing him as he keeps on getting rebuffed.

The text takes the form of Pug’s requests and the responses from the animals along with a sequence of encouraging suggestions and comments from an external narrator.

The result is picture book harmony of words and pictures creating a story that is both funny and satisfying.

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