Sometimes a hug is all you need. A hug can be many things. It can let you know you are loved, can you lift you up after defeat, it can be a warm embrace to celebrate a victory, can comfort you after an accident, can provide reconciliation after an argument, can be a joyous moment during good and celebratory times, can protect you in scary times. A hug is good for everything and there is nothing that can not be solved with ‘three squeezes’…
Three Squeezes follows the life of a father and son as time passes. From baby through childhood to graduation to adulthood, various events are retold where ‘squeezes’ are needed. The book opens with the newly born receiving gentle squeezes to his finger as he softly sleeps. By the end, the father has become a grandfather, his son with a family of his own. What is packed between are tender and important moments in life when those three most precious of words, I love you, are silently passed between father and son via ‘three squeezes’. The heartfelt read is the ultimate celebration of the strong and unbreakable bond between father and son.
The ‘three squeezes’ is the constant throughout, what changes is the ‘squeeze’ that is given or needed. Fearful of the dark, the young child receives, “Three long squeezes.” After a falling out between father and son, “Three strong squeezes,” are needed for reconciliation. And when the father becomes old and frail, he will need, “Three soft squeezes.”
Three Squeezes is told in gentle rhyming prose and features illustrations that are awash with warm colours. Illustrations are sensitive, poignant and memorable. From the gentle squeezing of a finger to a strong hand on the should to the warm welcoming embrace at graduation. Humour is woven in subtlety. With the child scared by the dark and screaming out for comfort, the cat is sharply awoken and leaps off the chair in fright. Heartfelt moments are captured with tenderness, as the boy has grown so his dog has aged and one scene shows the boy thoughtfully leaning on the now empty dog kennel.
A book that is sure to bring a tear to many an eye and is best enjoyed by child in the arms of a loved one. Three Squeezes is a wonderfully comforting hug of a book.
Recommended for 3+.