Monday, October 15

The Hodgeheg by Dick King-Smith

All Max wants is to discover how to reach the park on the other side of the road. There have been many hedgehog casualties but he knows there must be a way. How do the humans do it?

Determined to find a safe route for hedgehogs, Max in undeterred...but will a series of near-misses chance his mind? His thoughts seem to be muddled - but he is still one steadhrong hodgeheg.

I was searching for this book for a while to no avail but finally happened upon it in a small bookshop in York. So, shout out to The Little Apple Bookshop!

It is an interesting story about a hoglet's persistence. I was a little cautious because I wasn't sure if this was going to be a preachy attempt at teaching kids about road safety.* Seeing all the trouble and accidents Max gets himself into, I don't think that was the case. Instead it was a rather endearing tale about reckless ambition and intuition.

Right from the start of the book I was captivated by the voice. It launches straight into a dialogue between Ma and Pa and I love how British these hedgehogs are. Along with the story are these gorgeous illustrations by Ann Kronheimer which made the Brit setting even more tangible. I loved the telephone box and the policeman.

I beamed when I read that Max and his family lived at 5A because that is the number of my house in New Zealand. One thing that made me laugh was when Max would say "KO" instead of "OK." I thought, 'KO? You've got that right.'**

The Hodgeheg is a wonderful story that I would recommend to anyone...and not just because of my bias toward hedgehogs. Will reread in future.
*I was prejudice due to some ads I'd seen on telly in England. YouTube "Hedgehog Road Safety."

**KO for the clueless means knocked out.

In accordance with the FTC, Quill Café would like to disclose that the reviewer purchased 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 Puffin Books and is used solely as an aide to the review.

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