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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
Nora’s green hat is special. She wears it when she goes to meet her best friend, Lenny. They’re going to a movie together. Lenny asks about the hat and wants to try it on because he thinks it’s cool. Nora warns him to be careful. Unfortunately, a stiff wind blows it out of Lenny’s hand and the two have quite an adventure trying to rescue it, particularly from the stubborn river rat who’s already settled his nest of babies inside the hat. So, why is this hat so special to Nora? Special memories and a special love. Do you have something special like Nora’s hat?
Deborah Stevenson’s picture book story, The Green Woolen Fedora, will bring tears to your eyes as you follow the children trying to reclaim Nora’s special hat. The reader doesn’t know what makes this hat so special, at least not at the beginning of the story. That drives the plot through the adventure as the children try to rescue the hat. It’s at the end, when Lenny asks, “How come it’s so special?” that the reader learns the significance of this special hat, this fedora. The illustrations are cleverly and colorfully presented and help move the adventure along as the children chase after the hat. A simple object, like a hat, can hold so many tender and sincere memories and make us feel like we are still close to the original owner of the object. A beautiful, compassionate, tender look at cherished mementos and the memories they hold for us.