The Hare-Shaped Hole

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Pub Date 02 Jan 2024 | Archive Date 02 Jan 2024

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Description

*As Seen on CBC*

The Hare-Shaped Hole is a beautiful, touching and poignant picture book that gently explores themes of grief and loss.

Hertle and Bertle were always a pair, though one was a turtle and one was a hare.

They were utterly buddies, and best friends forever, and whenever you looked, you would find them together... until quite unexpectedly... the end came. When Hertle disappears for good, Bertle can only see a Hertle-shaped hole where his friend should be. He pleads with it, get angry with it, but the hole still won't bring his Hertle back. It seems like hope is lost... until Gerda the kindly bear finds him.

She explains that he must fill the hole with his memories of Hertle. And slowly... Bertle begins to feel a little bit better.

Powerful and moving text from children's author and poet John Dougherty is paired perfectly with warm illustrations from the wonderfully talented Thomas Docherty, in a thoughtful and sensitive approach to this difficult topic.

This moving picture book will be loved and treasured by children and adults alike. With kids, it can be used to start a gentle conversation about death and grief. And as a gift for a grieving friend, it’s the ideal gesture. Anyone who has lost a pet or loved one will be comforted by Bertle’s journey to acceptance and reassured by the fact that, eventually, things do get better.
*As Seen on CBC*

The Hare-Shaped Hole is a beautiful, touching and poignant picture book that gently explores themes of grief and loss.

Hertle and Bertle were always a pair, though one was a turtle and...

Available Editions

EDITION Other Format
ISBN 9780711276079
PRICE $18.99 (USD)
PAGES 32

Available on NetGalley

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Average rating from 63 members


Featured Reviews

The Hare-Shaped Hole is a wonderful picture book about loss and grief. When someone we love dies they leave an empty space behind. A constant reminder that someone is missing. Not knowing what to do with this feeling, sadness can quickly become depression. Working through grief is always difficult, but with the help of others, we can fill the emptiness with memories and take these with us wherever we go.

This picture book is a great tool for parents and caregivers to bridge the challenging topic of loss and grief.

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The Hare-Shaped Hole is a glorious picture book filled with detailed, bright illustrations by
Hertle Hare and Bertle Turtle are best friends, they do everything together until one day Hurtle disappears and ih ner place is a hare shaped hole. Bertle tries to reason with the hole to get Hurtle back but to no avail, even when he gets angry she doesn't reappear. A bear called Gerda helps Bertle through his grief and its the conversations they have are incredibly powerful
The text rhymes and it could be read by stand-alone, confident readers from six up. However, using this as a class read or a shared-at-home read is how you would get the most out of the book as it opens itself to some important discussions.
How do we manage loss whether that's death or someone leaving us to move onto pastures new?

It's a wonderful book and one all teachers should have in their class.

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This is story of loss and the hole it leaves behind. It is also about filling the hole with memories. It goes through the stages of grief in a simple way. It also shows that you’re not alone when losing someone. This would be a great book to read to a child after a loss. I loved the illustrations, especially the ones at the end!

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A tale of friendship and loss. A good book for a child that is mourning a friendship lost or a death.

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The matt illustrations in The Hare-Shaped Hole by by John Dougherty shows that life will have its ups and downs. There is a hare (Hertle) and a tortoise (Bertle) who are the best of friends (there isn't the competition of that well know fable). Their adventures and every day activities are indicative of common interests and compromise, the sign of a good relationship. One day Hertle is missing and it's not clear why but it is evident that she won't be returning.

Bertle to be expected goes through all the known stages of grief. Bewilderment at the absence, anger over the loss, and resignation of the reality, leaving only bittersweet tang of memories.

This is a lovely book that demonstrates that we will all experience loss, will experience a variety of feelings as we learn to deal with the absence. But with time and help from others will overcome grief and remember what we had with fondness. There is the indication that good advice and support can come from others who have experienced the same.

The rhyming words and expression filled characters highlighted the highs and lows of friendship, ably demonstrating that grief is just love with no place to go.

Truly a thoughtful tale that is aimed at the younger readers, however is eminently suitable for all those grieving or have lost something precious.

My thanks to NetGalley, the author and illustrator for this fantastic book which I thoroughly enjoyed reading.

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Beautiful message. Beautiful imagery and illustrations. It’s deep. It broke my heart and just really spoke to me. This is such a great book to help children (and adults too) with grief and processing those big emotions.

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I have never read a book so good at describing and processing through grief as this beautiful children's book. This book follows the story of a turtle who loses his friend and finds only a Hare-shaped hole. As he processes his grief, he learns to fill that hole in his life with memories.

I cried reading this, for the sweet turtle who lost his friend the hare, for Gerda the bear and her memories, and also for the loved ones I have lost. I will be purchasing a copy of this for my childrens' library and I imagine I will be gifting this to many friends in the future.

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This is the sort of children’s picture book that would be fun to read with a child just for the pictures and story. Or to think about things they have lost when those things are minor in the grand scheme of life’s bumps. But this also has the possibility to talk with a child about bigger losses in a way that is gentle and makes sense. Providing support and comfort to a youngster when they need it most. Along with lots of hugs!!! Thank you to Quarto Publishing Group - Francis Lincoln Children’s Books and NetGalley for the ARC.

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This book beautifully illustrates in text and colorful illustrations what it’s like to lose someone you love. The grieving process (anger, bargaining, depression) is shown by the sweet turtle who misses his best friend, the hare. Bear, who is older and has experienced loss in his own lifetime, comforts turtle in a way readers will appreciate. In my opinion, this is a helpful book for children and for adults. Losing a loved one is heartbreaking, but fond memories can help us heal.

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A beautifully illustrated book about friendship, loss and the importance of remembering the best bits life has to offer you

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Heartbreakingly beautiful story about loss, grieving and healing. John Dougherty did such a beautiful job at explaining the complex journey of losing someone who means the world to you, and slowly finding peace and happiness in memories that stay behind.

The illustrations in this book are a wonderful addition to the story.

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A beautiful picture book about grief - loved the message that it is OK to feel sad rather than telling someone to move past it. A wonderful and gentle take on keeping memories even when you have to say goodbye to someone. Would recommend for a young reader going through loss to be read with their parent. Thank you for the chance to read early!

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What a wonderful story, despite the heartbreaking theme. A title to add to any school's collection , together with titles such as Badger's Parting Gift. It really melts the heart of the reader.

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Wow. Beautiful. This is a fantastic story about friendship and grief. Quite profound—it actually brought tears to my eyes, which I don't think has ever happened to me with a children's book.

Great rhyme scheme, lovely illustrations, and a poignant story. Although the situation is sad, the story is uplifting. This is an important teaching tool for loss and grief and a heartfelt reminder about the importance of friendship.

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Thank you to NetGalley and Quarto Publishing Group for the copy of The Hare-Shaped Hole in exchange for my honest review.

I read The Hare-Shaped Hole with my children last night, and they absolutely adored it. I can tell it stirred up a bunch of their big and little emotions as we read through the pages of Bertle working through the grief of being without his best friend, Hertle. The story beautifully, and simply, explains what the Hare-Shaped Hole Bertle is experiencing is (grief) and how it's always there, and the process of dealing with it. Even I got a little emotional while reading the story. Grief is such a big emotion that comes in all shapes and sizes and learning how to recognize and handle it, is such an important thing. My kids (1st and 3rd grade) and I were able to have an open discussion afterwards which is something I appreciate in a kids' book. I'll definitely be looking into getting a physical copy for our collection.

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I haven’t come across a book which explains grief, loss, and coping for young children as sensitively, empathetically, and honestly as The Hare Shaped Hole.

Through lyrical rhyming verse, the story leads the reader through the experiences of Bertle the turtle after the sudden loss of Hurtle the hare. The metaphor of the hole left behind is simple and relatable, and the character of Gerda beautifully demonstrates how to support someone coping with grief. The ending is both hopeful and pragmatic, and this would be a wonderfully supportive read for a child who is grieving, preparing for loss, questioning mortality and loss, or supporting and understanding a friend who is grieving.

Thank you to Francis Lincoln Children’s Books and NetGalley for a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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I was impressed with the incredibly wise and sensitive way that The Hare-Shaped Hole by John Dougherty explained loss and healing in a way that young children can understand. Loss and grief can come from losing a friend or family member through death but also through distance or even disagreement. Dougherty does not specify how the loved one was lost, making this book helpful and comforting for children experiencing loss in a number of circumstances from a runaway pet to the death of a close family member. This book will be in my library's next book order. It fills a real need in our collection.

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The Hare-Shaped Hole by John Dougherty is a beautiful new release that you will want to add to your bibliotherapy collection. This lyrical story about grief and loss is gentle, honest, and thought-provoking. The illustrations perfectly complement the themes. “Hertle and Bertle were always a pair, though one was a turtle and one was a hare. They were utterly buddies, and best friends forever, and whenever you looked, you would find them together... until quite unexpectedly... the end came.” The story is relatable but also leaves room for the reader to make personal connections and engage in processing.

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From start to finish this book is absolutely beautiful! Everything from the illustrations to the story itself are just amazing! The emotions that I felt while reading were a bit of a roller coaster, which is not something that you hear a lot with picture books. The incredible friendship at the beginning was beautiful and so incredibly uplifting, and the loss was so very profound. Unfortunately, that is exactly what grief is... Profound.

As a librarian, I see many patrons looking for books on the topic of grief. I think this book would be the perfect addition to our collection. There aren't a ton of well-written kids books that stay true to the raw emotion of loss, but this is it! Thank you, Mr. Dougherty, for not shying away from difficult topics and for realizing that children also need these types of books!

🧚🏻Thank you so much to NetGalley, Quarto Publishing Group, and author John Dougherty for providing me with a free advanced copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

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Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for an electronic copy to read in exchange for an honest review.

I did not expect to cry when I read this. What a gut punch - but so well done. How do we explain to children when someone important to them is no longer there? This explains the complicated emotions that can happen in these situations. I love how the illustrations compliment the narrative. This is such an important book to help children with the loss of a loved one, be it from death, moving, or for unknown reasons. It broke my heart but I will still definitely have a copy available to share with my students and children as needed.

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wow. firstly, thank you to netgalley and quarto books for the ARC.

secondly, wow.

this is a must for children who are experiencing grief or witnessing their family experience it. its beautifully written and the illustrations are stunning.

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Devastatingly beautiful, would be great to use in counseling sessions with elementary students suffering from loss.

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Thank you Quarto Publishing for the chance to read an Arc of this text in exchange for an honest review. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ This is a must read for any child coping with a loss. This is the story of two best friends who do everything together. One day suddenly one of the friends is gone and the turtle friend is left alone. He starts grieving and doesn't know how to cope. He meets a new friend who helps him understand his grief and the steps to starting to deal with the loss. This would be perfect to have on hand in the classroom for any student who suffers a loss. I will be ordering this to have on hand.

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Loved this book! The lyrical quality of the writing and the pictures create a loving atmosphere to tackle the tough topic of grief. A must for any child who is experiencing grief.

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This is an adorably fun tale about the hare and the turtle.

The words end in rhyme which makes for a poetic flow of reading.

The illustrations are very sweet

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If the story doesn’t make you cry, the illustrations and colors on the final three pages most definitely will. Yes, it’s a story about loss, and it’s also a story about friendship and wisdom and moving on.

In this story, Hertle and Bertle were the best of friends, until, suddenly, Hertle isn’t there. The rhyming works very well, as Bertle tries to make sense of Hertle being gone.

A wonderful picture book full of wisdom and hope.

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A gorgeous book that will teach your littles about grief and loss while their readers will cry ugly tears in remembrance of all those who they have lost [I know I certainly did]. Gorgeously illustrated and told in a loving and simple way that even a small child can understand, this will open up conversations about loss and grief and how to fill all the holes that are sure to come. Just fantastic. Everyone who has littles or works with littles should be reading this book.

Thank you to NetGalley, John Dougherty, Thomas Docherty - Illustrator, and Quatro Publishing Group/Frances Lincoln Children's Books for providing this ARC in exchange for an honest review.

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I can’t stop rereading this little children’s book about grief and loss. Maybe because of losing our beloved bunny, Zuki, 18 months ago; maybe because loss is such a universal human experience.

Although an illustrated children’s book, The Hare-Shaped Hole is a lovely read for adults, too. The illustrations are so cute, and the story is told in catchy rhyme. It features a wonderful friendship, loss (which may be death, or might be an ending), and a kind outsider that teaches Bertle how to deal with his loss in a less destructive way.

I received an e-galley from Netgalley and Quarto Publishers, and fully intend to buy a hardcopy.

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Grief is such a hard thing for me to handle, even as an adult. I love the way this book reminds you that it's okay to feel all the bad parts, while also remembering that so many good memories are waiting to be there for you. I'll be picking up a finished copy of this for the Littles in my life.

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I do not know how I have not read this gorgeous picture book until now. It did make me well up a bit and loss is such a difficult topic to deal with for children. This story discusses it in such a gentle and genuine way that the loss can cover a wide range of things from losing people who have dies to losing friendships. The illustrations are just so beautiful too to add to the understanding.
I loved the message of not getting over a loss but seeing the "hare shaped hole" and filling it with love and memories of that person or thing.

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Yes, yes, yes. A thousand times yes. Such a beautiful and heartbreaking story with magnificent depth and hope. This book is so good at visually showing how a person can feel internally when someone in their life is no longer there. This book made me, a full grown woman, cry and have a sense of catharsis. I cannot think of a better book to help a child understand, accept and heal from something so complex and overwhelming.

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Books rarely make me cry. But this one did. In the most splendid of ways.

The Hare-Shaped Hole does a wonderful job of exploring loss and is not afraid to show just how painful and raw the grieving process can be. It does an excellent job of teaching children how to cope with loss, using gorgeous and moving illustrations and lyrical verse.

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I received an arc of this title from NetGalley for an honest review. Hare and turtle are the best of friends and do everything together. One day Hare is gone, and it is assumed has passed on and turtle struggles with his friend being gone. A new friend is able to help turtle move on though he will never stop missing Hare.

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