10 books like Bird Hugs

By Ged Adamson,

Here are 10 books that authors have personally recommended if you like Bird Hugs. Shepherd is a community of 7,000+ authors sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Hug

By Jez Alborough,

Book cover of Hug

Hug, an almost wordless picture book by author-illustrator Jez Alborough, shows Bobo the monkey saying “Hug” over and over again as he watches his jungle friends embrace. The expressive animals make it clear that they’re enjoying their cuddles. At the end, Bobo finally gets the big hug he desires. The board book edition makes a wonderful present for little ones who like to look at books and bite them too. Plus, “hug” is a great word to add to a toddler’s growing vocabulary. 

Hug

By Jez Alborough,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Hug as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A tiny chimp invokes the universal language, uniting his friends in a group hug to end all group hugs. Just try to resist Jez Alborough's latest charmer!

Ever feel like you need a hug? A really big hug from someone who loves you? That's how Bobo, the little chimp in this book, feels. Walking through the jungle he passes lots of creatures enjoying a cuddle together: elephants, chameleons, lions, giraffes, hippos - even the snakes have got someone special to squeeze. But poor Bobo is alone. Will he ever find the hug he needs? Using only the single word "hug"…


Hugs and Kisses for the Grouchy Ladybug

By Eric Carle,

Book cover of Hugs and Kisses for the Grouchy Ladybug

I was delighted when Eric Carle wrote Hugs and Kisses for The Grouchy Ladybug because I read many of his books during my preschool story time at the library. They are just right for the under-five age group. Hug and Kisses for The Grouchy Ladybug is a small and cute book, perfect for little hands to hold. Like many of Carle’s stories, each page has a different animal that young children can proudly identify. Each animal shows what happens when they receive hugs and kisses. They smile, clap, and jump across the page. Fans of The Grouchy Ladybug will enjoy learning that even the grouchy ladybug smiles when she receives hugs and kisses. 

Hugs and Kisses for the Grouchy Ladybug

By Eric Carle,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Hugs and Kisses for the Grouchy Ladybug as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A New York Times bestseller!

“A charming tale that shows how love can move even the grumpiest among us. A welcome addition to both the ever-popular Carle collection as well as books for Valentine’s Day.” —School Library Journal

From the World of Eric Carle comes a brand-new book starring the Grouchy Ladybug, a favorite character for over 40 years!

Perfect for fans of Love from the Hungry Caterpillar, this reminds us that that hugs and kisses truly make the world go 'round and that we all need love, even when we’re grouchy.

With Eric Carle’s signature bright collage illustrations featuring…


How to Hug a Pufferfish

By Ellie Peterson,

Book cover of How to Hug a Pufferfish

Author-illustrator Ellie Peterson’s recently published book How to Hug a Pufferfish is much needed in today’s world. It’s a story not only about giving hugs, but also about asking permission to give a hug. In an engaging and fun way with cartoonish illustrations, Peterson uses the prickly pufferfish to humorously show that not everyone wants to receive a hug all the time. If you’re a pufferfish, you need to be asked. It’s a book about consent for the youngest readers, presented in the sweetest age-appropriate way you can imagine. I will definitely be reading this at my story time, and might even gift this to a few prickly adults! 

How to Hug a Pufferfish

By Ellie Peterson,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked How to Hug a Pufferfish as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A picture book about a group of underwater friends who learn to ask for permission before showing their prickly, pufferfish pal some love.

So, you want to hug a pufferfish...

Who could blame you? That friendly, gap-toothed grin is hard to resist! Only, when Pufferfish is hugged or touched unexpectedly by their friends, things can get a little…spiky.

It’s not that Pufferfish doesn’t ever want hugs—it’s just that they need to have a say in when and how they’re hugged. Luckily, they have great friends who are willing to listen and learn the best ways to show Pufferfish some love…


Group Hug

By Jean Reidy, Joey Chou (illustrator),

Book cover of Group Hug

Jean Reidy’s Group Hug begins with a slug “needing someone to hug.” Slug offers a hug to a lonely beetle and together they then offer a hug to a mouse. The circle of comfort grows with animals of different sizes and emotions. When a bear comes along, the group is afraid, but slug presses on to include the bear. Reidy’s rhyming text and Chou’s bright art beautifully show that both the hugger and huggee experience joy from the hug. This makes another great story time read to spread kindness and understanding. 

Group Hug

By Jean Reidy, Joey Chou (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Group Hug as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

What do we all need when we're feeling down? yes, that's right, a group hug!
A slug is the unlikely hero of this feel-good tale: "You need a hug? I have one," said Slug, "to keep your heart snug!" More and more sad-looking animals arrive, and one by one slug persuades each to join the group hug until a scary looking bear turns up. But who will be brave enough to hug bear?
A wonderful read-aloud book with irresistible rhyme, vibrant nature scenes and huggable animals.


Janine

By Maryann Cocca-Leffler,

Book cover of Janine

As a middle school teacher, I knew a lot of Janines. Janine has her own style and isn’t afraid to be herself even if the “cool” kids think she’s odd. However, add in invites to a “cool” kids’ party and Janine has a problem. To attend, the “cool” kids want her to change. How far will Janine go to be included? To be included is a powerful desire but at what cost? Unfortunately, scenarios like this occur every day in classrooms across the country, but this book shines a light on the importance of looking at each person’s uniqueness through the lenses of kindness, compassion, and empathy. 

Janine

By Maryann Cocca-Leffler,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Janine as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

ILA 2016 Teachers' Choices Reading List

Meet Janine. She is one of a kind! Janine dresses a little different, remembers random facts, reads the dictionary for fun, and has her own style of cheering. Nobody does things the way Janine does things! One girl in Janine's class is throwing a party and all the COOL kids are invited. But Janine is not cool. Some kids think she is strange and want her to change. Will Janine try to be different or just be her spectacular self? In this charming story, Maryann Cocca-Leffler uses her own daughter as inspiration for a…


I'm a Hare, So There!

By Julie Rowan-Zoch,

Book cover of I'm a Hare, So There!

This is another book about appreciating differences told with in-your-face humor using a case of mistaken identity. When a chipmunk accuses a hare of being a rabbit, the hare stands up for itself. In doing so, hare describes the traits of a hare versus a jackrabbit. It’s a simple way to show kids the difference between animals that seem alike but are not. Like a turtle and a tortoise. Turns out chipmunk is not who hare thinks he is! A fun way to learn about desert creatures.

I'm a Hare, So There!

By Julie Rowan-Zoch,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked I'm a Hare, So There! as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

An exasperated hare and plucky squirrel engage in a battle of wits to determine who's who in this hilarious author-illustrator debut for fans of I Yam a Donkey and Grumpy Monkey. When a chipmunk mistakes Hare for a rabbit, Hare puts him in his place. But actually, the chipmunk is a SQUIRREL. Or so he says. Ever wondered about the difference between a turtle and a tortoise? Or a sheep and goat? So have Rabbit and Chipmunk-er, I mean, Hare and Squirrel! This hilarious look at dynamic duos in the animal kingdom pokes fun at the lookalike animals we all…


The Littlest Yak

By Lu Fraser, Kate Hindley (illustrator),

Book cover of The Littlest Yak

I love the scenery in this book. Great Himalayan mountains and crisp snow. Gertie is a perfect character that lets us see what many children struggle with. Gertie is not happy, she feels inferior, but an opportunity arrives which allows showing how valuable she is. Fun is intertwined within the pages of the books. The pictures are beautiful! Another fable story with a moral center!

The Littlest Yak

By Lu Fraser, Kate Hindley (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Littlest Yak as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

WINNER of Oscar's Book Prize 2021!
WINNER Book of the Year and Best Picture Book at the Sainsbury's Children's Book Awards 2021!

Perfect for fans of Rachel Bright and Julia Donaldson, The Littlest Yak is a joyous, rhyming caper that teaches little ones to celebrate their own unique talents!

On the tip of the top of a mountain all snowy, where the ice-swirling, toe-curling blizzards were blowy, in a herd full of huddling yaks, big and small, lived Gertie . . . the littlest yak of them all.

Gertie is the littlest yak in her whole herd, and she's feeling…


We're All Wonders

By R.J. Palacio,

Book cover of We're All Wonders

Adapted by the author from her bestselling Wonder, this book is more of a wish for kindness than an actual portrayal of kindness. Auggie looks different from anyone else, but inside he wants the same things: to have friends, to go on adventures, to be loved for himself. Besides, isn’t everyone different in one way or another? It’s a lovely book to read with young children, leading them to the realization that acceptance is not only the best choice, but also the choice that opens up an enormous world of possibilities. As the author concludes, Look with kindness and you will always find wonder.

We're All Wonders

By R.J. Palacio,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked We're All Wonders as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

I know I can't change the way I look. But maybe, just maybe, people can change the way they see...

For younger readers, the unforgettable story of August Pullman and Wonder reimagined in this gorgeous picture book.

With spare, powerful text and richly-imagined illustrations, We're All Wonders shows readers what it's like to live in Auggie's world - a world in which he feels like any other kid, but he's not always seen that way.

We're All Wonders taps into every child's longing to belong, and to be seen for who they truly are. It's the perfect way for families…


Just Ask! Be Different, Be Brave, Be You

By Sonia Sotomayor, Rafael López (illustrator),

Book cover of Just Ask! Be Different, Be Brave, Be You

I love this picture book that plants compassion, comfort, and connection for kids with all kinds of disabilities. Starting with author (and Supreme Court Justice!) Sonia Sotomayor’s own story of living with diabetes, then award-winning illustrator Rafael López’s story of living with asthma, it introduces readers in first person to an array of diverse kids with various visible and invisible disabilities. Using questions to help make each child relatable and allowing many children to see themselves in a book for the first time, this book opens hearts and minds.

Just Ask! Be Different, Be Brave, Be You

By Sonia Sotomayor, Rafael López (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Just Ask! Be Different, Be Brave, Be You as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Feeling different, especially as a kid, can be tough. But in the same way that different types of plants and flowers make a garden more beautiful and enjoyable, different types of people make our world more vibrant and wonderful.

In Just Ask, United States Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor celebrates the different abilities kids (and people of all ages) have. Using her own experience as a child who was diagnosed with diabetes, Justice Sotomayor writes about children with all sorts of challenges - and looks at the special powers those kids have as well. As the kids work together to…


Peter and Ernesto

By Graham Annable,

Book cover of Peter and Ernesto: A Tale of Two Sloths

This book has the perfect sense of humor to grab your attention, but then slips in notes on being a good friend, bravery, trusting others, and general appreciation for the world we live in. 

Peter and Ernesto are so relatable (I truly think there is a little bit of my own personality in each of them). Peter is content to experience life right where he is, Ernesto wants to explore. When Ernesto leaves their shared tree home to see more “pieces of the sky,” Peter panics and tries to catch up with him to make sure he doesn’t get hurt. In doing so, nervous Peter has unknowingly been as brave as Ernesto! In the end, they reunite (in the most hilarious way) and realize how much they need each other. 

I can see kids re-reading this one a lot, and also grabbing one of the other 2 books in the…

Peter and Ernesto

By Graham Annable,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Peter and Ernesto as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Peter and Ernesto are sloths. Peter and Ernesto are friends. But Peter and Ernesto are nothing alike. Peter loves their tree and never wants to leave, while Ernesto loves the sky and wants to see it from every place on Earth. When Ernesto leaves to have a grand adventure, Peter stays behind and frets. The two friends grow even closer in separation, as Peter the homebody expands his horizons and Ernesto the wanderer learns the value of home. With ridiculously cute art and simple, funny text, their reunion is even more adorable than you are imagining.

Laika Studios superstar artist,…


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