Spanish author Daniel Nesquens has written a goofy short chapter book about a talking hippo's quest to return home to his jungle in Africa. Mr. H, the hippopotamus, asks a young zoo visitor to open his cage so he can leave his unfulfilling life in captivity.
The path to the jungle is an urban one filled with traffic, a mysteriously acquired suit and tie, fun in the park, and dining in a fancy pizza restaurant. The hippo and the plot meander (in a good, Syd Hoff kind of way) and the story comes to an open-ended/existential ending.
The confident, airy and stylish paintings by Luciano Lozano are reminiscent of Roger Duvoisin and Miroslav Šašek, with a little James Marshall in there too, and add to the breezy feel of the story.
jpeg of illustration from MR. H from Mr. Lozano's wonderful blog
Thank you to Eerdmans for the review copy.