"In this debut, Won explores the way a simple gift and a little attention from friends can have nearly magical healing properties. “When Elephant woke up, he was very grumpy,” Won starts, drawing the elephant with dark frowning eyebrows and scribbly black lines above his head. The doorbell rings. “Go away! I’m grumpy!” he scowls. But the delivery is a box full of hats, and Elephant cheers right up after putting them on in a tall stack: “I’ll show Zebra!” His good deed has the knock-on effect of a line of dominoes. Zebra and the animals that follow are all grumpy, each gets a hat, and the cheer spreads. Won’s retro-style artwork uses muted hues and gives forms volume with watercolor-style shading. Owl’s hat is a sort of graduation cap meets awning affair, while Elephant’s has both a cuckoo and a handy cupholder. “I love this hat,” Lion says when they arrive at his cave. “But I can’t cheer while our friend Giraffe is not feeling well. What can we do?” Readers will know the answer to this one. Ages 4–8."
"All the animals are grumpy until a surprise brightens their day in this tale about the joy of sharing.
With eyebrows knit and feet clenched, Elephant stomps downstairs. A black-scribble cloud hovers over his head. But his anger melts into delight when he finds a gift on the doorstep—a tall and very silly hat comprising many other hats stacked one on top of the other. Happily, Elephant puts it on, exclaiming, “Hooray for hat!” Wanting to show others, he runs from one home to the next, distributing hats one by one and perking up his crabby crew of friends. When Elephant’s hats are all gone, the pals each contribute their own to make a new gift for Giraffe. The artwork, done in a pastel palette, is appealing and playful, and the heritage of Mary Blair can be seen in the spreads. Everything—from the composition of the characters to the way the images are placed with relation to the type—is well-designed. Won especially plays with definition, form and color. As each surly animal is introduced, it becomes less defined: Turtle is a shell, Owl a silhouette and Lion a dark cave. But when the animals join the hat party, they emerge in expressive, full form.
This lighthearted story revels in the small acts that make life better—cheers all around."