'Will You Be My Friend?' Is The Sweet Sequel To 'Guess How Much I Love You'

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The beloved children's book Guess How Much I Love You has charmed families across the globe for more than 25 years. Soon, fans of the tender tale can enjoy an all new story featuring the same cherished characters in the book's sequel, Will You Be My Friend?

Written by author Sam McBrantley and illustrated by Anita Jeram, the same team who brought the original story of Guess How Much I Love You to life, Will You Be My Friend? gives readers another peek inside of the life of Little Nutbrown Hare in an all-new children's picture book. Filled with the same type of soft, gorgeous illustrations and wise, yet playful words as the first book, this new story is bound to be an instant classic.

The original tale of Little Nutbrown Hare and Big Nutbrown Hare is basically required reading for every new parent to their baby, and is also one of the most treasured books in many family collections. My sons and I have read Guess How Much I Love You for as long as I can remember. No matter how many times I read "I love you right up to the moon — and back," my heart still melts faster than an ice cream cone in the middle of summer. Even at 5 and 7 years old, my boys still love to snuggle up close and hear me read the sing-song phrases and tender exchanges that just seem to roll right off the page.

My kids being elementary school-aged does put the fleeting days of our parent-child bonding into perspective. They're no longer toddlers who hang on my every word. They have their own interests and their own friends, which is precisely why I cannot wait for them to read Will You Be My Friend?

Candlewick Press/Walker Books

In Will You Be My Friend?, Little Nutbrown Hare sets out on an adventure through the grass to a place called Cloudy Mountain (which I'm sure will look just as dreamy as it sounds). There, he meets a new pal and the story of their friendship unfolds. As my kids move further into their own independence, they'll now have a new story from a familiar character to help them learn how to navigate new friendships.

Not only does this new story sound perfect for kids embarking on their own individual journeys toward connection, but the familiar tale of first friendship seems like it will resonate with adults as well. Do you remember your very first friend? Reading Will You Be My Friend? might just spark some fond memories that you can reflect on with your own kiddos. The new work is set for worldwide release in September 2020 by Candlewick Press and Walker Books, and it's sure to be a family treasure.