Skunk may have gotten a hug…but he’s still a stinker.
Mack’s effusive, hug-loving Bear returns, following his introduction in Who Wants a Hug? (2014). This time he wants to throw wily, standoffish Skunk a surprise birthday party. Skunk smells awful, though; none of the other woodland critters want to attend. Trying to keep the party both afloat and a secret, Bear suggests Skunk take a bath because baths are fun. Skunk will have none of it. Bear adds a slide to the swimming hole to make it look more fun, but Skunk sneakily makes sure it’s Bear who gets wet. The additions of a swing and a trampoline don’t entice Skunk to bathe, and Bear always ends up soaked and sudsy or worse. In his frustration, Bear lets slip about the party. Since he’s in the swimming hole, all the critters think it’s a pool party and happily jump in. Just as Skunk protests, a slip on some soap sends him on an awesome Rube Goldberg–esque tour of slide, swing, and trampoline. Skunk’s birthday surprise is that Bear was right all along. Mack’s bright, Saturday-morning-ready cartoon spots and full bleeds extend the silly story nicely.
All (except Skunk) will easily see how much fun a bath can be. (Picture book. 3-7)