Tuesday, February 14

Hedgehug: A Sharp Lesson in Love by Benn Sutton, Illustrated by Dan Pinto

All Hedgehug wants to do is give his heart to someone on Valentine's Day. Can he find a critter who is willing to see past his prickly exterior?

This wasn't the only ouchy hug book on the Valentine's display but I'm partial to hedgehogs over porcupines. It's written in prose rather than rhyme, which is better received by editors these days, who can find rhyming irritable. Even without the book before me now, it has made a definite impression.

Dan Pinto's imagery is warm and compelling, not too bright or stark. I have to mention that without the title or being shelved in the accompaniment of other spikey books, I would not have spotted Hedgehug for the animal he is. I believe that is because he is a European hedgehog, whereas Quillbert is an African hedgehog, which is where my mind is at when it comes to hedgepiggies. The colour of Hedgehug's belly isn't as distinct in comparison to the rest of his body.

Hedgehug is a book that makes an impression without being preachy. It highlights what many people feel on Valentine's Day: the need for love and the obsession of finding someone to fancy you on a superficial level. Hedgehug is so willing to give his heart away to animals he doesn't know anything about. They may judge him for his prickly exterior but his own desire for love isn't letting him see past the exteriors of others.

'Hedgehug: A Sharp Lesson in Love' is a book that shows the struggle for love can hurt. If you can find someone that compliments your personality and quirks, it is far more satisfying that dishing out your heart to anyone for the sake of Valentine's Day.

In accordance with the FTC, Quill Café would like to disclose that the reviewer borrowed this book. The opinions expressed are hers alone and no monetary compensation was offered to her by the author or publisher. Cover art is copyright of Harper Collins and is used solely as an aide to the review.

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