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I Want My Hat Back
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I Want My Hat Back

4.39  ·  Rating Details  ·  15,458 Ratings  ·  1,903 Reviews
A bear almost gives up his search for his missing hat until he remembers something important.
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published September 27th 2011 by Candlewick Press
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Me...Jane by Patrick McDonnellI Want My Hat Back by Jon KlassenGrandpa Green by Lane SmithPerfect Square by Michael  HallBlackout by John Rocco
2012 Mock Caldecott
2nd out of 85 books — 188 voters
Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus! by Mo WillemsBark, George by Jules FeifferClick, Clack, Moo by Doreen CroninKnuffle Bunny by Mo WillemsI Want My Hat Back by Jon Klassen
Favorite Funny Story Time Picture Books
5th out of 195 books — 133 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘ (of badger and SNAKE)
Excuse me, have you seen an adult enjoying this book?

No. Why are you asking me.
I haven't seen her.
I haven't seen any adults enjoying this book anywhere.
I would not enjoy this book.
Don't ask me any more questions.

OK. Thank you anyway.

Ps. Yes, I'm currently reading all the books I received for my students. What do you mean, it shows?

People, I swear. Sigh.
Wendy Darling
Oct 14, 2011 Wendy Darling rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Sandra Boynton fans
What's a bear to do when he's misplaced his hat? He has to ask all the other animals he meets whether they've seen it, of course!

This charming picture book caught my eye immediately because of the humorous illustration on the cover, and I'm delighted to say that the contents are just as endearing. This story about a well-mannered bear on a quest to find his missing hat is told in simple language, and shares the same sort of gentle mischief that you might find in Sandra Boynton's books for toddle
Jun 15, 2011 Melissa added it
Shelves: picturebooks
I think the best way to tell you about I Want My Hat Back is to describe my family’s reaction to it. I was sent a review copy by the publisher (the official pub date is Sept. 27), and I began reading it right out of the package, standing in the living room. A bear has lost his hat, and he wants it back. He asks a fox; the fox hasn’t seen it. He asks a frog; no luck there either. He asks a rabbit—a rabbit who happens to be wearing a pointy red hat.

“No. Why are you asking me,” replies the rabbit.
Destinee Sutton
Jan 27, 2012 Destinee Sutton rated it it was ok
Shelves: picture-books, funny
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 04, 2013 Maciek rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Kids and adults!
I bought this book at the Nottingham Contemporary, a gallery of modern art which was showing an expo entitled The Universal Addressability of Dumb Things. I thought that since I saw a giant inflatable cat and found it to be a splendid sight a book about a bear looking for his missing hat might appear to my tastes as well. Will he find his missing hat or not?

I am happy to report that I Want My Hat Back is a total hoot and I had a blast reading, especially because it had a delicious twist ending w
Jan 03, 2012 Flannery rated it it was amazing
I didn't love this book, I don't know what you are talking about. Why are you asking me if I loved this book?

Thanks for looking at this review anyway.

Note: This review is basically useless to people who've not read the book. READ IT then come back and realize that it might sound like I didn't like it but my five stars speak for themselves. I loved it. The reason I wrote it like that is because this extremely short but well-done picture book teaches kids about how people (and animals!) try to ev
Apr 06, 2016 Ronyell rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Anyone who's a fan of Black Comedy!!!

“My hat is gone. I want it back.”

I will admit that when I first looked at the cover of this book, I actually thought that this was going to be a pretty boring book due to how simplistic the artwork looked. Now, after reading “I Want My Hat Back” by Jon Klassen and seeing that this book was nominated for several literary awards such as the Irma Black Award Nominee and the Theodor Seuss Geisel Honor Award, I seriously believe that this is one of the best darkly humorous children’s books I had ev
Nov 18, 2011 Simeon rated it really liked it
Shelves: comedy
I love how the description for I Want My Hat Back is longer than the book. Nevertheless, this is one of the funniest children's picture books ever. I laughed too and my age is in like double digits technically.

Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist"
A bare-bones account of a bear who needs a Bayer because he can't bear to go bareheaded, even though his favorite hat barely even covers the tippy-top of his big bear head.

Raise your hand if you think the protagonist looks more like a giant prairie dog. Or maybe even an otter. With bad posture.

If I were any kind of an artist, I'd do a spoof of this. I'd make it an anti-diet book and call it I Want My Fat Back:
"I lost my fat. I miss it. I want it back. Have you seen my fat? What will I do if I
Every once in a while I come across a new picture book that I love so much that I carry it around with me and make random people read it. I Want My Hat Back is one of those books.

Oh my word, this book is hilarious. Seriously. And I believe it's all because of Jon Klassen's style. I knew Klassen's name before, not really for the books he's illustrated (Cats' Night Out, The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place and more) but for his one-page graphic story in the collection of funny, creepy, disgus
Oct 04, 2015 Molly rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Molly by: Alienor
Loved this one! I don't care it was written for little children.


I had such fun with this short story. After 9 hours at work my brain needed a kick-start to function properly and this little story did the job perfectly. For a few short minutes I must have been a sight in the library, with a book meant for a preschooler in my hands, and a grin plastered on my face. Honestly, I was almost saying aloud "Wasn't that your hat? Wasn't that a hat? What does your hat look like?
May 27, 2011 Betsy rated it it was amazing
I knew it! I knew it, I knew it, I knew it, I knew it, I knew it! When Caroline Stutson’s Cats’ Night Out was released by Simon & Schuster in 2010 it contained art by an animator going by the moniker of Jon Klassen. And frankly I just thought it contained some of the slickest art I’d seen in a picture book in a long while. I hardly even noticed that he was the same guy behind the pictures found in The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place by Maryrose Wood. Still and all, until now he hadn’t ...more
Shannon (Giraffe Days)
Jul 27, 2012 Shannon (Giraffe Days) rated it it was amazing
This book was sent to Hugh from his aunt and uncle for his 1st birthday earlier this month (July 2012), and it is a real treat.

It tells the story of a bear who has lost his hat, a red pointy thing. He walks around asking all the animals he meets if they have seen his hat, and they all say no - including the rabbit that is wearing his hat! The bear finally realises he did see his hat and runs back to the rabbit to get it off him. Simple, right?

Actually, there's a lot of subtlety at work here, a
Lisa Vegan
Jan 16, 2012 Lisa Vegan rated it really liked it
Oh, this it too adorable, nope a bit worldly-wise, but cute too. So funny! What a hoot. The story is simple. A bear has lost his beloved hat and searches for it, asking those along his way if they have seen it. I loved the whole story, although I can imagine some little kids or sensitive kids might find it hilarious but some might be freaked out a bit by it too.

It’s a really fun read aloud book, and for families who have kids with a wicked sense of humor, this book can be enjoyed by all family m
Klassen's artwork is beautiful and his humorous technique at telling the story of a bear's lost hat is unique.

The writing is simple yet catchy and the drawings are engaging; I particularly liked one scene that was painted red to depict anger...very creative stuff.

HOWEVER!!!!!! as a "children's book" this one is extremely disappointing.

In summary, (view spoiler)
Steph Sinclair
Nov 21, 2011 Steph Sinclair rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Steph by: Wendy Darling
Our suspicions about the dire fate of the wee fish in This is Not My Hat have NOT been disconfirmed by perusal of this, the first in what seems to be turning into a series on piloskleptomanie. Here, the culprit is a rabbit. I will say no more, but only quote the Irish Times on the back: "Great fun, unless you are a rabbit." Unless, that is, you are a rabbit who steals hats.
Kelly H. (Maybedog)
May 21, 2012 Kelly H. (Maybedog) rated it it was amazing
Shelves: how-picture-book
I knew just looking at the cover of the book that I would love it. It's so matter of fact and the bear has such a deadpan look on his face that I just knew it was going to be good. For the first couple of pages I was worried that maybe I was wrong but as soon as I saw the rabbit I was sold.

I'm not really sure this is much of a kids' book though. This kind of dry humor with a dark ending is very adult and the minimal wording and simplistic pictures are perfect. It's is totally my kind of humor a
Maureen Milton
Nov 06, 2011 Maureen Milton rated it really liked it
I was already to dismiss this spare picture book as adult humor packaged for hip parents with ironic offspring. I read it myself. My 10- and 13-year-olds read it and laughed. I re-read it. Okay, this is pretty darn visually funny, but how will it go over with the Primaries?

A staring bear cannot find his hat and so politely surveys his woodland companions, even helping a turtle atop a rock he's been attempting to climb all day. When the bear despairs of ever seeing his hat, another creature asks
Jun 06, 2012 Eden rated it it was amazing
Um. Best. Book. Ever.

Okay, maybe not the best book ever. (I’m not ready to assign that title to any one book yet.) But holy eff, I’m seriously thinking about buying this one.

Similar to The Pigeon Finds A Hot Dog in that only dialogue occurs, I Want My Hat Back differs in the fact that conversations comprise the plot line—and that there is a distinct lack of emotion (or change at all, really) in the simple but beautiful Chinese brush drawings of the animals. Somehow, this serves to accentuate t
Nov 01, 2014 James rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The dark tale of a bear who has lost his hat. I'm not quite sure the hat suits him though, being small, red and pointy. But, it's his hat and he wants it back. The bear asks all the animals in the wood if they've seen it - each time getting a slightly different, but ultimately negative answer - until one animal asks him to describe the hat and he realises he actually saw it several pages before on the head of an animal that felt the need to answer very defensively. Rushing back through the fores ...more
Dec 21, 2014 Brenda rated it it was amazing
I laughed so hard.
My 10yo and I picked up this book at our local bookstore, and by the 3rd page spontaneously broke out in a readers-theater performance because it was too good not to read aloud, and read aloud together. Fresh giggles at the rabbit page & the armadillo page especially!

Can't help but love the chutzpah of the ending.
Colby Sharp
Top 5 picture book for me this year.
Joanna Marple
May 01, 2012 Joanna Marple rated it it was amazing

Bear approaches Snake, and then goes on to ask all the woodland animals he meets, if they have seen his lost hat. I chuckled from page one, as I believe kids will too, at all the silly replies and excuses the animals give for not knowing where Bear’s hat is. An adorably illustrated, big bear is looking for his hat and he is intent on repeating his same question to all he meets, to see if they have seen it. “No,” says a frog. “I have not seen any hats around here.” “What is a hat?” replies a poss
Bwah ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! Ha!!!! Fab. U. Lous. Definitely not a preschool storytime read. I think school-age would find it hilarious, as would most adults. A good example of simplicity still being able to work in telling a story and in being absolutely funny. Seriously--I think I started to cry from laughing.

I'd love to read this aloud with another person for an audience. It would be brillian. The book is brilliant. I recommend to all of my friends. You may not find it brilliant, for which I'm
Sarah Sammis
Jan 30, 2013 Sarah Sammis rated it it was amazing
Although I'd heard of I Want My Hat Back by Jon Klassen, it took the numerous parodies that were popping up across the internet to get me to read it. The one that finally did it was The Doctor Wants His Fez Back.

I Want My Hat Back is, in itself a parody of the children's book which takes a character to meet all the friends in the quest for something. In this case, the Bear is looking for his hat. He interviews each character in the book until he finds his hat.

How he gets his hat back, though, is
Nov 14, 2011 stillme rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books, awards
As a children's librarian, I usually finish a picture book and try to figure who would best like to read it next. This one, however, I immediately returned to the first page and read again - twice. (Fortunately, my four year old on my lap felt the same way about it). The ending had me laughing out loud, even when I knew it was coming. Although the bear's expression hardly changes (and not at all for the first half), the writing is expressive enough that it seems like his face is moving. A great ...more
Sep 09, 2015 Beth rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books, own
Back when I read this in 2011, I gave the book three stars. I read it because it was getting lots of buzz in the Twittersphere but upon first reading, I didn't get what the appeal was.

Then I read it to a class of 6th graders and my opinion changed slightly given what great discussion it prompted.

I have since read this book to every class I've ever taught and every time I read it with kids, they help me see the book with different eyes. I either learn or notice something new. So I think it's ti
I read this through screenshots on tumblr. That is a) probably piracy and b) the most modern way I've ever read a book. I feel like a true teenage hipster. Those people who are worried about Kindles ain't seeing nothing yet.

This book is hilarious, cute and (view spoiler) made me caw out loud.
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Review:) 1 3 Mar 15, 2015 02:10PM  
UEL Primary PGCE ...: Book review 4 I want my hat back 1 2 Jan 30, 2015 02:52AM  
...jk 10 76 Nov 17, 2014 01:37PM  
Goodreads Librari...: Please add the video 3 23 Jul 18, 2013 10:33PM  
Ashland 566 Autum...: Picture Book 27 1 1 Nov 14, 2012 10:51AM  
Red Dot Books: Ea...: Book Trailer for "I Want My Hat Back" 1 9 Oct 21, 2012 03:00AM  
Red Dot Books: Ea...: See Think Wonder? 1 1 Oct 21, 2012 01:57AM  
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Jon Klassen received the 2010 Canadian Governor General’s Award for his illustrations in Caroline Stutson’s CAT'S NIGHT OUT. He also created illustrations for the popular series THE INCORRIGIBLE CHILDREN OF ASHTON PLACE and served as an illustrator on the animated feature film Coraline. I WANT MY HAT BACK is the first book he has both written and illustrated. Originally from Niagara Falls, Canada, ...more
More about Jon Klassen...

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“What if I never see it again?
What if nobody ever finds it?
My poor hat.
I miss it so much.”
More quotes…