HomeBooks by AgeAges 0-3The Perfect Pair: Hug Hug! Kiss Kiss!

The Perfect Pair: Hug Hug! Kiss Kiss!

I found the following two board books to be adorable. Even though they are by two separate authors, they completely compliment each other. Hug Hug! makes a great gift for dads (Fathers day or just because), and Kiss Kiss! is a wonderful present for moms (Mothers day or just because); collectively they make a sweet little baby shower gift.

Hug Hug!Hug Hug!

by Lorie Ann Grover (author) and Rebbecca Malone (illustrator)

Reading level:
Ages 0 – 3

Board book: 24 pages

Publisher: Little Simon (December 16, 2008)

The simplicity of this book and the natural instinct all animals, including humans, have to hug and nurture their young is why I found this book to be so delightful. The text is short, sweet and to the point; it’s full of charming, good-humored rhyme. The illustrations are soft, comforting and heartfelt. The last two page spread is of a Dad hugging his child, which in my opinion makes this a wonderful book for a first time father – actually, make that any father. Gorgeous!

Kiss Kiss!Kiss Kiss!

by Margaret Wild (author) and Bridget Strevens-Marzo (illustrator)

Reading level:
Ages 0 – 6

Hardcover: 24 pages

Publisher: Little Simon (December 23, 2003)

The cover of Kiss Kiss! had me at hello. The illustrator, Bridget Strevens-Marzo, managed to capture an expression on the cover’s baby hippopotamus that exudes the pure essence of toddler-hood: innocent, excitable and the need to be loved. This hippo is surely loved!

At the beginning of the book the baby hippo is distracted by a dragonfly, and with play as his main focus he rushes through the jungle in pursuit of his newly found entertainment. As the hippo whizzes pass many fabulous jungle animals – including: lions, zebras and rhinoceros’ – he hears a familiar sound from all of the animals, “kiss, kiss!” It isn’t until the dragonfly greets his mom with a kiss, that the baby hippo remembers he had forgotten to give his mom a kiss. The story ends with a a game of peek-a-boo and a beautiful, “kiss, kiss!”

The writing is playful and uses just the right amount of descriptive words for the very young. The artwork is colorful and energetic, it completes this wonderful little board book. Lovely!

Special note: Bridget Strevens-Marzo is also the creator of a book I highly recommend for encouraging budding young artists (ages 3 – 7): The Big Book for Little Hands.

Blog Links:

School for Schools has included Kiss Kiss! in a great story-time lesson based on baby animals.

Amanda’s Parenting Preschoolers Blog made a post featuring Hug Hug!

Readertotz – a book blog dedicated to toddlers, and is co-hosted by author Lorie Ann Grover – has the Hug Hug! press release.

The Children’s Book Review, named one of the ALSC (Association for Library Service to Children) Great Web Sites for Kids, is a resource devoted to children’s literacy. We publish reviews and book lists of the best books for kids of all ages. We also produce author and illustrator interviews and share literacy based articles that help parents, grandparents, teachers and librarians to grow readers. This article was written and provided by one of TCBR's regular contributors.

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