The Hole in the Middleby Paul Budnitz, Aya Kakeda
Morgan has a hole in his middle, and it gives him a strange, empty feeling -- sort of like always being a little bit hungry. His best friend Yumi tries to help, but nothing seems to make Morgan feel better. Not music, not picnics... not even reminding himself to forget about the feeling. Then Yumi gets sick, and Morgan bakes her a cake. Cheering Yumi up means that… See more details below
Morgan has a hole in his middle, and it gives him a strange, empty feeling -- sort of like always being a little bit hungry. His best friend Yumi tries to help, but nothing seems to make Morgan feel better. Not music, not picnics... not even reminding himself to forget about the feeling. Then Yumi gets sick, and Morgan bakes her a cake. Cheering Yumi up means that Morgan doesn't stop to think about the hole in his middle. Only then does the hole start to shrink... until it's exactly the same size as a belly button.
With bright, whimsical illustrations by up-and-coming artist Aya Kakeda, this simple, inventive tale gently reminds us that our own problems sometimes go away when we focus on our friends.
Morgan is a boy with a hole in his midsection; you can see right through it, and it causes an empty feeling no matter what he's doing or how much he eats. His best friend, Yumi, tries to help by making strawberry cake, taking his mind off it with play and suggesting he just forget about it, but nothing works until, in a reversal of roles, Yumi gets sick and needs his help. Alert readers will notice even before Morgan does that the hole in his tummy gets smaller and smaller the more he focuses on Yumi rather than himself. Morgan and Yumi's caring friendship is warmly portrayed, and the fact that they help each other solve problems (there are no adults here) encourages young readers' budding initiative and self-sufficiency. The colorful, cheerful spreads depict all sorts of amusements and feature whimsical details that add to the brief text; it's fun to try to spot the robot toy and the doll with a flower-shaped face that accompany Morgan and Yumi, respectively, through their adventures.
Focusing on the needs of others is a time-honored solution for those dissatisfied with their own lot in life; here is a motivating parable for contemporary kids.(Picture book. 3-6)
- Publication date:
- Product dimensions:
- 8.46(w) x 9.24(h) x 0.40(d)
- Age Range:
- 3 - 6 Years
Meet the Author
Paul Budnitz is the founder and president of the company Kidrobot, where he designs toys, fashion apparel, and cartoons. He is also a filmmaker, photographer, and computer programmer. His inspiration for The Hole in the Middle came one day when he was sitting very still and noticed that his middle was empty. This is his first book for children. He and his family live in Boulder, Colorado.
Aya Kakeda is a fine artist and illustrator who has shown her work in galleries in New York, Hollywood, and Tokyo. Her editorial illustrations have appeared in The New Yorker, The New York Times, and many other publications. She was born and raised in Tokyo, Japan, and now lives in Brooklyn, New York. This is her picture book debut.
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