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While We Can’t Hug

Eoin McLaughlin
Illustrated by Polly Dunbar

From the team behind the bestselling The Hug, a heart-warming picture book that shows us ways to be affectionate while social distancing.

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Date Published
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The bestselling and heart-warming picture book that shows us ways to be affectionate while social distancing, from the team behind The Hug.

Hedgehog and Tortoise were the best of friends.
They wanted to give each other a great, big hug.
But they weren’t allowed to touch.

“Don’t worry,” said Owl. “There are lots of ways to show someone you love them.”

So the two friends wave to each other, blow kisses, sing songs, dance around and write letters. And even though they can’t hug and they can’t touch, they both know that they are loved.

A gorgeous, uplifting, inspiring picture book that makes social distancing fun!

Critic Reviews

A touching tale

The Sunday Times
Critic Reviews

The tender simplicity of While We Can't Hug pairs Eoin McLaughlin's text with Polly Dunbar's rosy-cheeked images

The Guardian
Critic Reviews

An important historical record of the time

The Times
Critic Reviews

Precious - but timely and comforting all the same

Critic Reviews

Gently reassuring

New Statesman
Critic Reviews

Delicate watercolour illustrations, full of expression, are teamed with a timely and charming story, making this a real winner

Irish Independent
While We Can't Hug

Hedgehog and Tortoise want to give each other a great big hug, but they're not allowed to touch.
From the creators of the internationally adored The Hug, Eoin McLaughlin and Polly Dunbar, we are thrilled to bring you a new story: While We Can't Hug.


Eoin McLaughlin was born in Ireland and now lives in Mauritius with his family. The Hug – a bestseller – was his debut picture book and the series has gone on to sell over a quarter of a million copies. He also wrote, amongst others, While We Can’t Hug, The Longer the Wait, the Bigger the Hug, The Roar, Secret…

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