Like a warm hug, this is a read for a chilly, snowy winter’s night curled up in front of a crackling fire. A beautiful book about a bear’s bedtime, This is the Kiss by Claire Harcup is a magically simple tale with delightful free-hand style illustrations by Gabriel Alborozo. Their pencil lines give warmth and movement to the pictures and cast of cute cuddly characters. Lovely and lyrical with just a few simple words, this is the perfect picture-book for little ones with which to begin their reading adventures.

This a tale of going to bed. While bedtime isn’t always a favourite with most children, this fleeting gentle story describes how magical a time it can actually be. From happily playing in the snow, ‘little bear’ is waved in for bedtime by ‘mummy bear’ who along the way holds his hand, gives a caring smile, rubs him down with a towel, tickles and cuddles him before finally giving little bear a kiss goodnight to send him off to sleep in his cosy bed.

Children will love the endearing drawings of the two bears and their snug burrow while adults can take a nostalgic trip through their own memories of bedtime. This is a moving tale of the relationship between parent and child. A celebration of the tiny almost seemingly insignificant moments in childhood that we all but forget and that one day come to mean so much more.

This is the Kiss is a book that turns bedtime into the best part of the day. That special time you get with a parent, where one day of fun and play ends and you get to drift off to sleep and dream of what a new day will bring.

I am sure there will be many of us out there who wish we could go back to the cosiness and security of our bedtimes, when we had no worries or responsibilities, when someone tucked us in a tickled us and read us a story so that we could drift off into a land of carefree dreams.

That is the wonder of this little gem of a book.

All images courtesy of Walker Books, who have published This Is The Kiss by Claire Harcup and Gabriel Alborozo.

This Is The Kiss was published by Walker Books on 5th January 2017.