a tip of the hat to two friendly stories

These two stories are as charming and sweet as a cherry tart. That good.

cherry tarts

Check them out for yourself!

brimsby's hats cover imageBrimsby’s Hats, written and illustrated by Andrew Prahin
published in 2014 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers

Brimsby lives in the quiet countryside. He is an ace hatmaker. His best friend comes for tea and conversation every day, and that about sums up his life. It is a very happy, contented life.

Until his best friend moves away. Now it is so, so quiet. And lonely.

Brimsby sets out to find new friends, and he discovers a tree full of birds. But, they are so worn out from trying to keep warm in the snow and wind, they don’t really have time for lovely, friendship moments like tea and brimsby's hats andrew prahinconversation.

It’s up to Brimsby to solve the birds’ miseries and his own loneliness. He is so kind and so clever, you just know he’s up to the challenge.

Well — this has to be one of my new favorites. It is so dear and so full of kindness and friendship and cups of tea…I just love it. The digital illustrations are tender and descriptive and made me fall in love with Brimsby at first sight. Preschool and up.

How to Hide a Lion cover imageHow to Hide a Lion, written and illustrated by Helen Stephens
published in 2013 by Henry Holt and Company

One day a lion comes to town, looking to buy a hat.

This does not go so well, because the townspeople promptly panic and chase him away.

Iris finds him, though, and is elated to have him for a friend. It takes ingenuity to care for a lion in secret, without startling one’s parents, but Iris manages it for a while. The two of them become happy chums.

One disastrous night, though, Iris’ mom does spot the lion and — YIKES!  — off he runs. Is there any way  to prove that he is, after all, a kind lion?how-to-hide-a-lion-helen-stephens

Iris is charming, her lion is ever so accomodating, and there’s an exciting surprise involving burglars, to boot! Friendly, jolly, slightly-retro illustrations light up the pages of this gladsome story, coming out of the UK.

You won’t want to miss either of these gems!