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Somebody Loves You, Mr. Hatch (paperback) Paperback – January 1, 1996
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From Publishers Weekly
This warmhearted tale examines the effect that love and tender regard can have on a lackluster existence. Mr. Hatch is a drab, predictable gentleman who leads a painfully ordered and uninteresting life, his dreary routine at the shoelace factory barely broken by the same joyless lunch day after day. One Valentine's Day a giant candy-filled heart is delivered to Mr. Hatch with a note that reads, "Somebody loves you." Just the thought of someone taking an interest in him completely changes the way Mr. Hatch interacts with his neighbors and co-workers. The newly adorable gentleman becomes so much a part of people's lives that when it is disclosed that the heart was delivered by mistake, his friends and neighbors rally around him in a loving demonstration. With its carefully measured pace, Spinelli's gentle prose is perfectly married to Yalowitz's ( Some of My Best Friends Are Monsters ; The Spooky Eerie Night Noise ) contemporary-style colored pencil illustrations, rendered with skill and sensitivity. Even the palette here changes with the story's mood, from dull grays and tans to cheery pinks, oranges and blues. Ages 4-7.
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
From Kirkus Reviews
Colorless Mr. Hatch--who works in a shoelace factory and eats a cheese and mustard sandwich for lunch every day with, just occasionally, a prune--is jarred from his reserve by receiving a huge Valentine box of candy with a card that says only, ``Somebody loves you.'' Amazed, he samples it, shares it at work and, buoyed by his friendly reception, sympathetically helps several people out on the way home (e.g., he watches the newspaper stall so that its proprietor can take his cold to the doctor). He's soon baking brownies, hosting a neighborhood picnic, and reading to the local kids. Then the postman arrives with the news that the candy was delivered to the wrong address, putting poor Mr. Hatch into a funk; but his devoted new friends rally round to bring him back into their cheerful society. Told with warmth and a light touch, the story easily transcends its predictability. It's much enhanced by Yalowitz's mellow color- pencil illustrations. His unique elongated characters with their extra-tall heads are at once animated and serene; the smooth clarity of his scenes is enlivened with many amusing details. A charming book with a real plot, its amiable tone beautifully complemented by the intriguing illustrations. (Picture book. 4-8) -- Copyright ©1991, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.