cover image Hiding Heidi

Hiding Heidi

Fiona Woodcock. Little Bee, $16.99 (32p) ISBN 978-1-4998-0350-1

Heidi, an expert at hiding, blends into her surroundings so well that she wins every game of hide-and-seek she plays with her friends. When Heidi’s excellent hiding ruins her birthday (“Sorry, Heidi,” her friends tell her. “We couldn’t find you, and we got tired of playing hide-and-seek”), she decides to embrace other games and activities that give her companions a chance to shine. In her first picture book, British author-illustrator Woodcock creates smudgy, screenprintlike scenes that combine soft, gray detailing with bright pops of color. Heidi changes her clothing in nearly every scene, allowing her to camouflage herself in a variety of landscapes: as Heidi and three friends run along the shore, her yellow-and-gray dress echoes the triangular sails of the boats behind them, and an outfit of red overalls and a knit cap perfectly match the tree trunk she hides behind during one of the children’s hide-and-seek games. Playful imagery and Heidi’s eventual recognition of her friends’ talents add up to a warm story about compromise and common ground. Ages 4–8. Agency: Bright Agency. (Nov.)