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4.6 out of 5 stars54
4.6 out of 5 stars
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Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
The best way to describe Hugless Douglas and the Big Sleep is charming illustrations running alongside a basic story with minimal word count. This is a typical toddler book, nothing wrong with that, but it doesn't stand out against anything else my grandchildren already have and doesn't hold my attention enough to make me want to read it very often. If you don't already have a collection of toddler books this is a nice place to start but, if you do, this is a book you could probably ignore.

Hugless Douglas is a big, silly, slightly clumsy bear and The Big Sleep is just one of a series:-

Don't Worry Hugless Douglas
Hugless Douglas
Hugless Douglas Finds a Hug

Melling has a lot of books available and, personally, I don't think the Hugless series is his best work by a long way.

The Three Wishes
The Scallywags

I've left a 3* review for Hugless which might seem mean because the book's so cute but; my grandchildren aren't interested enough in the character, or the story, to want me to read the book again. We've read the story three times and that's enough for them. There's no interaction, nothing to grab their attention, and The Big Sleep is typical of the books they already have. Nice to read at bedtime perhaps when the children are half asleep but Hugless won't keep them occupied in the middle of the afternoon when they're full of energy.
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Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Hugless Douglas and the Big Sleep is a big square book about a big hairy bear who gets invited to a sleepover at Rabbit's burrow. Needless to say, being such a big bear, Douglas finds it's a bit of a squeeze to fit into Rabbit's home - especially when a small flock of baby sheep invite themselves along too. Somehow they all manage to squeeze into the burrow, ready for their bedtime story...

Although the story is short David Melling manages to squeeze in a few giggle-inducing jokes along the way, nicely illustrated in bold, colourful drawings. The text is sparse, so it would be easy for young readers, and leaves plenty of room for parents to fill in some comic asides inspired by the pictures. There are some cute details to discover in the pictures too, especially the antics of the lamb troupe, so you can make the story last longer than the few pages might suggest. With the sleepover theme it's obviously meant as a bedtime story and after the story there's a two-page spread of bedtime-themed things to identify -- like dressing gown, slippers, toothbrush and cuddly-toy -- all helpfully modelled by the lambs. My only minor complaint would be the inside-cover advert for other books in the series and the associated iPhone app - such commercialism always seem a bit out of place in a children's book, but that's the world we live in. Maybe one of the other books explains why Douglas is hugless because this book doesn't - he seemed quite huggable to me...
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VINE VOICEon 2 January 2013
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Good quality children's book with loads of big bright pictures that younger kids will love as Hugless Douglas goes to a sleepover party. The plot is, as you would expect, fairly basic stuff but there's enough charm here to keep youngsters entertained even after a dozen readings. Whether mums and dads will still be entertained is another matter. Plenty of pages too so it's not over with in 30 seconds like some books seem to be and the fine detailed drawings will keep them finding new things for quite a while.
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VINE VOICEon 7 January 2013
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
A bright, colourful and beautifully illustrated childrens book about a hapless bear, Hugless Douglas, who has been invited to a sleepover at Rabbit's House. Douglas is so excited and the story tells of his preparations,all the people he meets on his way and the experience at Rabbit's. It is a delightful, amusing story which is fun to read to my grand-daughter now, but will also be a book that she will be able to read herself when she is a bit older. I am pleased to note that there are many other Hugless Douglas stories - this is a lovely character for a young child to hear about (and for this adult too!).
One word of caution, you will receive a massive package when the postman brings your order - I wondered what on earth size the book was and was concerned that it would be too big for my grand-daughter to hold! The book is actually just under half the size of the padded envelope and, as Amazon ask for comments on packaging, I would suggest that,on this occasion, the package was both excessive and unnecessary.
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Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
A very sweet, funny little book.

The sense of humour is a blend of "Winnie the Pooh" and "Shaun the Sheep". This story is a simple bit of slapstick, but it's the artwork that really make it. The bold cartoon style is cute and funny, especially the flock of sheep. There's a panel where the sheep have all been sneezed up in the air and then land on the ground, and every sheep is pulling its own comedy pose. I laughed out loud at that bit, and I'm supposed to be a grown-up adult.

Incidentally this is the third (I think) book in the series, so if you were just to read this one and wonder why Douglas is called "Hugless Douglas", there's no explanation of that here- it ends up seeming like an inappropriate name, as he's a bear with friends. Not particularly important unless your child is a stickler for such details.

It's not particularly inspired or original, nor will it withstand too many repeat readings, but it's very endearing.
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Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Hugless Douglas and the Big Sleep is a top notch children's book that ticks all the boxes. It's a nice story with plenty going on as the story unfolds and It's big pages are wonderfully illustrated.

The scenery and characters are really cute and full of personality, having been brought wonderfully to life by the man who penned the tale, David Melling.

Illustration is clearly David's strength (as opposed to words) as some of the writing is a little clunky in places - but this doesn't take away from the enjoyment at all and I doubt your kid will notice.

Overall Hugless Dougless is an extremely likeable character, as are his friends. The story is very nice too - but as with any kids' book worth its salt - it's the pictures take centre stage and fire up the imagination; and here the illustrations are amongst the best I've seen.
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Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Hugless Douglas and the Big Sleep is the latest in a series featuring the young, somewhat clumsy bear. Like the other books in the series, it offers a simple but charming story, this time featuring a sleepover at Rabbit's hole that doesn't go quite according to plan. David Melling's illustrations are, as always, colourful, dynamic and highly amusing. Unlike some of Melling's other works it also, thankfully, manages to avoid saccharine sentimentality.

It remains however, a book aimed exclusively at children. This is not a book that parents will find offers anything for them other than passing amusement and the pleasure of seeing their children enjoy it.
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Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
This is the third picture book featuring Hugless Douglas, following on from Hugless Douglas and Don't Worry Hugless Douglas. In this story, Hugless Douglas is going to Rabbit's for a sleepover, but gets lost on the way. Little Sheep offers to show him where it is and Hugless Douglas invites him along - "there's plenty of room at Rabbit's". What he doesn't realise is that he has picked up a few more sheep along the way. Will they all fit into Rabbit's home? Will Hugless Douglas get his bedtime story? This is a feel good story, with vibrant and humorous illustrations and lots to talk about (and count) with young children.
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VINE VOICEon 13 January 2013
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
A nice story that my 3 and a half year old son loves to read, or to have read to him, and one which his Daddy has fun reading too. Hugless Douglas is off for a sleep-over at Rabbit's, and THERE'S PLENTY OF ROOM AT RABBIT'S! The story builds up to a nice ending, and has some engaging action along the way. My son especially likes it when the bear sneezes and all the sheep coming popping "B-doing!" out of the rabbit holes. We'd never come across Hugless Douglas before, but now we have this book, we've discovered another Hugless Douglas at the local library which we are also immediately enjoying. Highly recommended.
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on 28 January 2013
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Reading a picture book to a child can be as an active a brain exercise for the adult reading the book, as the child listening. Take for instance `Hugless Douglas and the Big Sleep'. This is my first interaction with Douglas and I had to ask myself, why is he hugless? It would appear that this was tackled in a former story and revolved around the spiky things in his back? Is this a bear with course hair? As my mind ticked over this particular wonder I was thankfully drawn into some charming drawings about one bear, one rabbit and loads of sheep.

Douglas is going for a sleep over at Rabbit's house and along the way picks up some sheepish friends; will there be enough room in Rabbit's warren for them all? `The Big Sleep' is full of fun little ideas that are daft, but great to read. Douglas meets his sheep friends in a most peculiar way and the scene where several creatures are stuck to his back is the highlight. The book is full of images like this that give young minds a lot to think about and look at. The story is a simple one, but the illustrations make it far more fun as you see the entirety of a warren.

The internal cover art is also fun; the back has a series of images showing the different characters in the book and what they would take to a sleep over with them. This eye for detail is what lifts `The Big Sleep' above its below average story. I'm not really sure what the moral of the tale is particularly, just that animals can be a little daft. It is the central story that is the weakest element of the book, there is no real reason for what happens and relies on all the animals being a little dim. Youngsters will enjoy the illustrations on offer, but I fear this is one story that the adults may soon grow tired of telling.
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