This kitty has some rules if you want a hug…a lot of rules.
“There shall be no head hugs, no leg hugs, and no tail hugs. / Cheek hugs are frowned upon.” The fluffy white cat with big, green eyes doesn’t like hugs from stinky persons (the illustration reveals a skunk) or “if you are on the potty” or “if I am on the potty!” Hugs from those with full diapers are verboten, as well as from those with no diaper. No hugs from scaly persons, bears, or overzealous boa constrictors. But with all these rules…when the kitty needs a hug, no one can give one. So this persnickety cat makes some revisions to the rules. Basically, the cat will now accept hugs from nearly everyone previously ruled out. Nostrils pinched shut will take care of “stinky hugs,” and “pinchy hugs” will be OK so long as they are gentle. Suddenly everyone wants to offer a hug. And so forth. Bestselling author/illustrator Kirk’s first from his boutique publishing house is not auspicious. The protagonist’s expression is almost terrifyingly uber-cute, with exaggeratedly wide eyes and a blood-red smile, and its imperiousness makes it rather unlikable. While its guidelines that “hugs are to be given gently [and] respectfully” are welcome, the long catalog of unacceptable hugs and then newly permissible ones feels repetitious rather than enjoyably silly.
Miss Spider and Nova fans will find themselves disappointed. (Picture book. 2-8)