Mom's Hugs and Kisses
“One morning Hugs the puppy woke up early.
His mother and father and all his sisters were
still sleeping. Quietly he tiptoed outside. There
was something he had to find out . . .”
Originally published as a Touch-and-Feel board book in 2005, Mom’s Hugs and Kisses, by French-borns Christophe Loupy and Eve Tharlet, is “a classic back in print.”
Like Nancy Tafuri’s All Kinds of Kisses and Steven Henry’s picture book by the same name, Loupy’s story describes the different kisses given by numerous animals, in this case through a puppy protagonist who requests and receives others' kisses throughout the day. In the end, of course, “the best kiss of all is the kiss he gets from his mother.”
The story is predictable, as retold tales are, and is written with a lyricism that, when read aloud, is reminiscent of multi-generational board books and stories for toddlers, which is the age group to buy this book for. Eve Tharlet’s double-spread illustrations are simply lovely to look at. The puppy’s facial expressions personify the inclusive trust and love inherent in young children—and puppies, for that matter, And children will want to look at her pictures of the horse alongside the puppy again and again. The last page is literally the inside back cover of the book, which is pleasant in its originality and is a nice concluding tactile effect for young readers. It lists the kisses received by the puppy in poetic syllabic form, reinforcing young readers’ memory skills and understanding of chronology.
Spring has arrived. For those with toddlers in their lives, this book will make a nice surprise gift that underscores the prominent concept of love this time of year.