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Soojin Kwak has a degree in Illustration from Kingston University in Surrey and won second prize in the prestigious Macmillan Prize for Illustration with her first picture book, A Hat for Mr Mountain. In 2019 she won the Bologna Book Fair Silent Book Prize for her book, Starbuilders. Soojin is from South Korea, but loves spending time in the UK.
January 2020 Debut of the Month | There’s a lovely ‘what if’ challenge in this quirky and inspiring picture book. Little Nara is an expert hat maker, creating beautiful hats for the animals in her forest studio. One day she receives a letter from a new customer – can she make a hat for Mr Mountain no less? She rises to the challenge, trying out various different materials before finding exactly the right way to make a hat for a mountain. The story unfolds beautifully, and it makes a great tale of friendship, creativity and ingenuity. There’s lots to discuss while reading and this could prompt interesting STEM conversations or projects too. This is Soojin Kwak’s debut and she is definitely an illustrator to watch.
A sweet and funny picture book about kindness, creativity and how to make a hat for a mountain. Nara loves to make hats of all shapes and sizes for the animals who visit her workshop in the forest. Then one day she receives a letter from Mr Mountain: he wants a hat, too. Nara is up for the challenge, and knits him an enormous woolly hat . . . which is perfect until it shrinks in the rain. The leaf hat is eaten, the stick hat burns to the ground. What other material can she try? The exploration of different materials and their properties makes A Hat for Mr Mountain the perfect picture book for primary STEM lessons. This warm and humorous story about never giving up, and the importance of working together to help a friend is illustrated in quirky and exquisite detail. Look out for the mice making a smoothie! A masterful debut from the winner of second prize in the Macmillan Prize for Illustration 2018.