Published by Knopf Books for Young Readers
Summary: Annika Mae kicks things off with this introduction: “Sometimes you make a friend, and it feels like you have known that friend for your entire life.” That’s how it is with her and Hedgehog, Mutty, Owl, Beaver, Mole, and Hen and Chicks…but it hasn’t always been that way. Before he meets Annika Mae and the others, Hedgehog lives on an island with his friend, a stuffed dog named Mutty. One stormy day, Mutty is blown away, and Hedgehog leaves home to find her. In his quest, he meets the other animals one by one, gathering clues about Mutty’s disappearance, until all of them end up in Annika Mae’s yard. She helps Hedgehog reunite with Mutty, and he repays the favor, sealing their new friendship and possibly starting a series of new adventures. 128 pages; grades K-3.
Pros: This charming chapter book would make a great read-aloud or first book for newly independent readers. The illustrations, by Caldecott honoree Lauren Castillo, are sure to win plenty of fans to what will hopefully be a new series.
Cons: Kids who are looking for a lot of humor and/or action might find this story a little slow.