Poor Isaac the hedgehog is famished after his long winter sleep.
Noisy Starling awakens Isaac at the start of spring, and he’s immediately tempted by her breakfast of a worm. But Starling laughs at him because she thinks he’s having a “bad hair day.” The hedgehog’s feelings are hurt, and things only worsen when he ventures forth to find food, since Starling was too busy mocking him to share. Readers will note that he’s oblivious to a fox, unmentioned in the text but depicted stalking Isaac across a spread and then lurking about as Isaac encounters Toad and Heron, who both thwart his efforts to get a meal. The seemingly watercolor-and-ink illustrations provide visual interest as they add humor and extend the verbal narrative, which unfortunately lacks cohesion. Just when Isaac’s fortunes seem to be changing with the sighting of an earwig (“Best breakfast of all!”), the lurking fox pounces and tries to make a meal of him. But that bad hair day ends up saving Isaac’s skin since it wasn’t caused by bed head but spiky quills that the fox isn’t keen on ingesting. Somehow emboldened by this brush with death, Isaac tells the fox that there’s plenty of food for all. Huh? Starling also returns with an offering and an apology, adding another layer to a rushed conclusion.
Unsatisfying. (Picture book. 3-5)