Hug Me


Face it, we all need a hug sometimes, but poor Felipe the cactus has been taught never to enter another’s personal space. His family just wasn’t the touchy-feely type.

But what happens when you break the mould and regardless of what you may have been taught, you go in search of that illusive hug.


Catci can be prickly little characters, but not Felipe, well, not really. All he wants is a hug. Surely he can find someone to hug?

He made a new friend. A big, bright yellow balloon. They grew close until the disastrous day when… ‘Bang!’ His family blamed him and made him feel dreadful.


After a number of failed attempts to find a new place to live and find a new family, Felipe ultimately learns to enjoy his own company, albeit a very lonely existence. Until one day he discovers another lonely soul who isn’t bothered by Felipe’s prickles. But who could it be?

Simona Ciraolo graduated with an MA in Children’s Book Illustration from the Cambridge School of Art and she describes this story as “being about holding onto the very thing that matters the most to you, even when everyone else around thinks you should let it go.”

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