cover image Hiro’s Hats

Hiro’s Hats

Elisa Kleven. Wild Swans Publishing Cooperative, $17.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-7333043-9-9

In this gently whimsical yarn, an imaginative little snow monkey named Hiro sees “a hat one day, flying like a bright bird through the sky.” The cheery red and yellow hat becomes a plaything and something more—“It is my friend and a hat.” Hiro’s siblings tease him—“That’s not a friend, it’s a hat”—but a kindly robin offers friendly support. When a winter wind blows Hiro’s hat and the robin’s nest away, they find a silly, cozy way to solve both of their dilemmas when the robin snuggles on Hiro’s head, creating a new and even more unconventional hat. The story twines toward happy endings for all, including the lost garment. Mixed-media collage illustrations show sweet-faced, woolly-bodied monkeys at play in richly textural landscapes. Through Hiro, Kleven sympathetically illustrates young children’s ability to find emotional connections to inanimate objects, and the creative ways they can respond to stress. Ages 3–8. (Dec.)