I WANT MY HAT BACK by Jon Klassen

I WANT MY HAT BACK

by , illustrated by
Age Range: 4 - 7

KIRKUS REVIEW

Klassen’s coy effort combines spare illustration, simple, repetitive text and a “payback’s a bear” plot.

A somber, sepia-toned bear longs for his missing hat and questions a series of forest animals about its whereabouts. While everyone denies seeing it, a rabbit (sporting, readers will note, a pointy red chapeau) protests a bit too indignantly. Ten pages on, as the bear describes his hat for a solicitous deer, realization hits: “I HAVE SEEN MY HAT.” The accompanying illustration shows the indignant bear suffused in the page’s angry red. There’s the subsequent dash and confrontation, followed by bear in hat and rabbit—well, nowhere to be seen. Klassen’s ink-and-digital creatures, similarly almond-eyed and mouth-less, appear stiff and minimalist against creamy white space. Foliage is suggested with a few ink strokes (though it’s quite bashed-up after rabbit goes missing). The text type, New Century Schoolbook, intentionally evokes the visually comfy, eminently readable design of 1960s children’s primers. Font colors correlate with the animals’ dialogue as well as the illustrations’ muted color palette, and the four-sentence denials (first rabbit’s, then bear’s) structurally echo each other. Indubitably hip, this will find plenty of admirers. Others might react to a certain moral vapidity. And the littlest ones will demand to know where the heck that rabbit went.

Cynical on wry. (Picture book. 4-7)
Pub Date: Sept. 27th, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-7636-5598-3
Page count: 40pp
Publisher: Candlewick
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1st, 2011




INDIES CHOICE AWARD NOMINEES:

Fiction THE CAT'S TABLE by Michael Ondaatje
by Michael Ondaatje
Fiction 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami
by Haruki Murakami
Fiction THE MARRIAGE PLOT by Jeffrey Eugenides
by Jeffrey Eugenides
Fiction SALVAGE THE BONES by Jesmyn Ward
by Jesmyn Ward

MORE BY JON KLASSEN

ChildrenTHE DARK by Lemony Snicket
by Lemony Snicket
ChildrenTHIS IS NOT MY HAT by Jon Klassen
by Jon Klassen
ChildrenHOUSE HELD UP BY TREES by Ted Kooser
by Ted Kooser

SIMILAR BOOKS SUGGESTED BY OUR CRITICS:

ChildrenBEAR DESPAIR by Gaëtan  Dorémus
by Gaëtan Dorémus
ChildrenPENNY AND HER MARBLE by Kevin Henkes
by Kevin Henkes
ChildrenWHERE’S MARY’S HAT? by Barroux
by Barroux