Have you seen my hat?
What is a hat?
Thank you anyway.
I Want My Hat Back is the deceptively simple story of a bear who has lost his hat. What if he never sees it again? WAIT! He has seen his hat…
This is a book that does more showing than telling, and this is where the mastery of Canadian author/illustrator Jon Klassen lies. The style of both the illustrations and the dialogue is minimalistic, with words and colours used sparingly to create a delicious tale in which the memorable animal characters are skillfully brought to life.
Why Leola loves it…
Excuse me, have you seen a rabbit wearing a hat?
Leola knows what the squirrel doesn’t! She is delighted to have experienced the thrill that comes from having read between the lines. Jon Klassen trusts the ability of the child reader to fill in the gaps and achieves a naughty twist without being scary or gruesome.
Why I love it…
The beautiful illustrations use an unusually muted colour palette (dull browns and greys and just a splash of red). They are so simple, and yet they say so much. From the look in the bear’s eyes we know exactly what he’s thinking.
This is the rare kind of book that offers me sublime insights into my children’s capacity to comprehend the unwritten story. It’s a book that makes us laugh when we read it and smile when we think about it. It is nothing short of perfect.