I Want My Hat Back

2012 Giesel Honor Book

Written and Illustrated by Jon Klassen

A bear is missing his hat, and he wants it back. Readers follow him along in his journey to uncover the truth of his missing hat as he asks various creatures if they have seen it. This sounds very simple, and it is. And yet there are a lot of subtle choices that set this book apart, such as the many little hints, deceptions, and turn-arounds in the text. The story truly is a bit of a mystery that will keep young readers and listeners guessing and questioning for a little while. This is one of those rare, tightly crafted minimalist picture books that manage to do a lot with very little, both image and word-wise. The text and illustrations both take full advantage of the power of space, whether it be the pauses and excellent pacing in the text, or the discipline of keeping the illustrations direct and uncluttered. The book accomplishes a lot of work through these simple choices and edits. Not only is this book well-crafted, but it is an easy-to-read, fun book that beginning readers will enjoy. It also would work great as a quick read-aloud.

Review by Joshua Whiting, Granite Library Media Program
Rating: ★★★★★ (5 stars)
Interest Level: Grades PreK-3


I Want My Hat Back
Written and Illustrated by Jon Klassen
Candlewick Press
40 pages
Release Date: September 27, 2011
ISBN: 9780763655983 (hardcover)

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13 thoughts on “I Want My Hat Back”

  1. My classes loved this book. We even did a little readers theater of it. Don’t enter me in the drawing- but I had to tell you how much fun we have had.

  2. Im so sad. I didnt sign up for this giveaway because I was expecting the book from a vendor but now its backordered and Ill have to wait until next year to get. Great book!

    1. Cindy has something in the works right now creating options for the legislative money. There will be lots of choices and this will definitely be one of them, so you may have a chance to get it this year. All will be revealed at the March meeting.

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