The Kiss That Missed

Every night we lucky parents get to send our little ones to sleep with a big kiss goodnight. What if there was a night when taking the time to deliver that kiss became a little less important.

This is the premise of The Kiss That Missed written and illustrated by David Melling. A sweet story about a young Prince and his very busy father, the King, who blows his son a kiss good night as he hurries on his way. As the Prince sits in his royal bed, he watches the blown kiss float past him and out the window!

The Prince cries to his mother the Queen, who informs the King. The king quickly dispatches his bravest Knight into the dark wood to catch the kiss, where more adventure awaits.

The book is visually stunning. The illustrations are vivid, witty and include some fun details that appeal to kids and adults alike. While a story that includes a castle, prince, queen, king, brave knight and scary fairytale creatures is definitely a winner, there’s more to this one. The family backstory is instantly familiar with kids. While parents are typically busy, today it seems even more so. The story is full of twists and unexpected turns, ending with a lesson about what is truly important.

When I asked a first grade class what the King learned in the story, most responses were that he shouldn’t always be in a hurry and not to blow a kiss, “because it could get lost”. I found it interesting that they got the message so clearly, even when delivered through a fantastic tale. A good reminder to all of us parents to slow down for focus on what matters most.

David Melling has illustrated over 60 books, writing and illustrating 15 of them. Other titles include sequels Good Knight Sleep Tight and The Three Wishes, as well as Just Like My Dad and Hugless Douglas. The Kiss That Missed was shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway award.

Perfect for boys and girls, ages 4 to 8.

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