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Monday, January 23, 2012

The Runaway Hug, written by Nick Bland and illustrated by Freya Blackwood. Scholastic, 2012. $14.99 ages 2 and up

"It was long and soft,
and Lucy thought it was
very nice.
"Thank you," said Lucy.
"I'll bring it back as soon
as I'm finished with it."

It's too late for bedtime tonight, but you don't want to miss sharing this gentle delight with your children tomorrow night...or for many nights after that!

When Lucy asks Mom for a hug, she is told that Mom is more than willing to share. However, it is her 'last' hug and she will need it back. Lucy promises!

The first hug is very long and soft and she wants to share it with Daddy. She does so, to his great delight. When she asks for it back, she gets a bit more than she bargained on but she wants to share it with her older twin brothers...perhaps it needs that extra strength. Off she goes!

A bedtime trip is made to every member of the family, ending with Annie whose canine mischief is noted as Lucy approaches the bathroom door. Annie is ready for a romp, it seems. Once Lucy has shared a soft, strong, big, peanut buttery hug with her rascal of a dog, the hug is not returned. Despite a full house chase, Lucy cannot catch the matter how diligent and determined she is to do so.

Annie can't stay away from Lucy for too long. I am certain you can guess what happens. Ultimately,
Lucy heads toward her bedroom and her warm, comfy bed, where she meets Mom just in time to return her hug and accept a good night kiss.

Delightful...and heartwarming. Freya Blackwood adds her formidable talent to the telling of this warm and lively bedtime story. Her soft-edged pastel illustrations give readers a close-up look at a loving family, their home and the chase that takes place between child and pet. It is a gently reassuring tale and perfect for any bedtime. It is sure to become a favorite!

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