What You Need to Know:|
• A little fish steals a hat from a big fish and thinks he'll get away scot-free, but things don't go exactly as planned.
• With similar themes, this book is an excellent companion to Jon Klassen's 2011 book, I Want My Hat Back.
• I Want My Hat Back is a Theodor Seuss Geisel Honor Book, A New York Times Best Illustrated Children's Book of
the Year, and a #1 New York Times bestseller.
• The questionable fate of the little fish may have some readers asking questions.
• As with I Want My Hat Back, this is a picture book that may be more appropriate for an older reader.
• Jon Klassen also illustrated House Held Up By Trees
• I Want My Hat Back was the first book that Klassen both wrote and illustrated.
Jon Klassen has done it again. Following up on his very successful picture book, I Want My Hat Back, he once again shares an incredibly humorous story about a missing hat. For those of you who read, I Want My Hat Back, this new story is told from the opposite perspective. This time, we follow the adventures of the culprit rather than the victim.
A little fish snags an adorable hat from a big fish and swims off confidently into the sea, smugly saying it was too small for that big fish anyway. The first person text reveals what the presumptuous little fish is thinking, while the illustrations enlighten the reader with a completely different story. For example, as the little fish says, "...he probably won't notice that it's gone.", the big fish's eyes shift upwards toward the empty spot on his head. Uh oh. Although it's subtle, the little fish's crime clearly does not go unpunished. Let's just say, two fish swim into the plants, and only one comes out. And he's wearing a hat that is slightly too small for him!
The excitement and anticipation build as one scenario plays out in the illustrations and another one plays out in the mind of the little fish. Slight changes in the illustrations, like the bubbles flowing behind the big fish as he moves faster and the shifting eyes of the characters as they express their thoughts, add to the thrill. The muted colors and dark background help to highlight the contrasting size of the two fish. As with I Want My Hat Back, this story is both simple and clever. It is also funny - very funny. And, it raises some questions about right and wrong which might make for an interesting conversation. Keep this one on the bookshelf, and pull it out whenever you need a laugh.
2012, 40 pages
Excellent Read Aloud, Ethics, Humor, Talking Animals
• Why did the little fish steal the hat?
• Does his assumption that it is too small for the big fish make it right?
• Is it ever OK to take something that doesn't belong to you?
• Have you ever had someone take something of yours? How did it feel?
• Have you ever been so sure of something and then been wrong? How did it feel?
• What can you tell from looking at each character's eyes throughout the story?
• What do you think happens to the little fish in the end?
• How did the ending make you feel?
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