cover image I’ll Hug You More

I’ll Hug You More

Laura Duksta, illus. by Melissa Iwai. Sourcebooks Jabberwocky, $16.99 (32p) ISBN 978-1-4926-2618-3

Duksta returns to the two-in-one format of I’ll Love You More (2007), using a large cast of animals to celebrate the comfort inherent in a parent-child hug. Reading the book from one end reveals a child’s perspective (“I’ll hug you to say thank-you/ for getting my breakfast ready./ I’ll hug you and snuggle with you/ and my favorite teddy”), and flipping it over presents an adult’s take as a hug-filled day progresses from morning to night. Two purple ring-tailed lemurs kick things off both times, and the lemurs again appear in the middle, where the narratives converge. Iwai’s (Let’s Go to the Hardware Store) cheery, multi-textured illustrations highlight the sheer versatility of hugs one can give: a small hippo offers a one-handed, behind-the-back number as it eats cereal at the breakfast table, a ladybug uses all six limbs to cling to its parent, and two snakes entwine in a cozy, circular embrace. The rhythms of Duksta’s verse can be somewhat clunky, but her reassuring message comes through loud and clear. Ages 4–8. [em]Author’s agent: Cathy Hemming. Illustrator’s agent: Chris Tugeau, Christina A. Tugeau Artist Agency. (Jan.) [/em]