“Hug me”: a remarkable book that tells a complex tale in charming drawings and poetic prose. It’s the story of the universal need for affection and friendship, even if we are somewhat prickly.

Ever feel like you need a hug, a really big hug from someone? That’s how Felipe the young cactus feels, but his family just isn’t the touchy-feely kind. Cactuses can be quite prickly sometimes you know . . . and so can Felipe. But he’ll be darned if this one pointy issue will hold him back. So one day Felipe sets off on his own to find a friend and just maybe, that long awaited hug.

In her debut picture book, Simona Ciraola creates an endearing tale of friendship, beautifully illustrated with buoyant wit and the perfect story to share.