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Help A Hamster

Written by Hilary Robinson

Illustrated by Mandy Stanley

Featured Books for 5+ readers Featured Books for 7+ readers General Fiction

LoveReading View on Help A Hamster

The story of a school hamster provides a sensitive and effective way of talking about adoption in the third of the excellent Copper Tree Class series of picture books. Henry the class hamster has returned to school after the summer holidays with four babies! Alfie Tate, who’s usually at the centre of any class mischief, is particularly concerned about the babies and wants to find them all good homes. Alfie is adopted and though he can’t remember if he was sad before he was adopted as a baby, he thinks he might have been. With Alfie on the case the babies soon have homes of their own and he himself takes in the smallest of the litter, Alfonzo. An enjoyable story that gently raises important issues.

Andrea Reece

Help A Hamster Synopsis

The touching story of Help A Hamster helps children gain a greater understanding of what it is like to be adopted.  It also briefly covers the issue of bullying, as the smallest hamster, Alfonzo, is ignored by his mother, Henry, and pushed aside by the others.   Alfie takes pity on poor Alfonzo and when he is the last to be found a new home, Alfie’s adopted mum agrees to him taking the hamster home as his own.

Part of the Copper Tree series.

Help A Hamster Press Reviews

Praise for the Copper Tree class series:

'The Copper Tree gives the clear and unsentimental message that it's quite natural to be sad when someone dies but it also endorses the powerful effects of memory as a means of healing.' Kate Saunders, Children's Author

'A delightful and touching story of life and how we live it, as little people and bigger people, together and on our own. The Copper Tree brings a tear and a smile to my face at the same time' Ger Graus, Chief Executive, The Children's University

"The book gently touches on areas of experience and facts about ageing which may be new or difficult for children, and those who read with them, and encourages thoughtful refletion in a positive and helpful way." Rev Canon Ann Easter. Chaplain to Her Majesty The Queen.

"This book represents a celebration of a child’s right to be heard and for explanations to be tailored to meet their needs. Written in simple language with a gentle nuance of humour and love, Tom’s Sunflower is a teeny triumph."  Peter B. Forster, Chartered Counselling Psychologist  

"Hilary Robinson and Mandy Stanley create ground breaking picture books that deal with topical issues in a very sensitive way." Ruth Humphreys, children’s book specialist, librarian and storyteller.  

“It is so refreshing for a series of children’s books to cover such challenging social issues in such a sensitive manner, and so beautifully illustrated too.”  Lorraine Kelly

“Inspiring” Fiona Phillips

“Charming” Joanna Lumley

“Book of the Week”   YOU magazine, Mail on Sunday

“There are lots of important issues raised by this story, all covered gently and sensitively” Juno 

“This is a thoughtful story… vibrant and colourful pictures are in tune with the words” Carousel magazine

“Sensitively handled and beautifully produced, this gentle and reassuring text with expressive illustrations will provide help to children facing bereavement in a number of different situations’.
Books for Keeps

"the best collaboration between an author and illustrator I have ever seen."  Jo Cumming, former bookbuyer for W H Smith. 

“This beautifully illustrated book is aimed at children between the ages of four and seven. It would be a rewarding book to read alongside your child to help them with their understanding of adoption.” Adoption Today Magazine

“Soft pencil and watercolour illustrations create a gentle and comforting atmosphere in which children can explore ideas of love, family and belonging.” Little Parachutes

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9780957124523
Publication date: 22/08/2013
Publisher: Strauss House Productions
Format: Paperback

Book Information

ISBN: 9780957124523
Publication date: 22nd August 2013
Author: Hilary Robinson
Illustrator: Mandy Stanley
Publisher: Strauss House Productions
Format: Paperback
Pagination: 32 pages
Suitable for: 5+ readers, 7+ readers
Genres: General Fiction

About Hilary Robinson

Hilary Robinson is an award winning radio producer and author of over 50 picture books. Awards include the 2016 Historical Young Quills Award for ‘Flo of the Somme.’ Radio credits include Private Peaceful for BBC Radio 2 and her series for Barry Humphries Forgotten Musical Masterpieces was listed as one of the top 30 artistic triumphs of 2016 by the Telegraph. Extracts from her book 'A Song For Will and the Lost Gardeners of Heligan' were read on BBC Radio 4. Follow her on Instagram here. Read a Q&A with the author here.

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