Elmore by Holly Hobbie

Elmore by Holly Hobbie
Elmore by Holly Hobbie

today’s children storybook summary is


By Holly Hobbie

The takeaway: Make yourself known before asking for understanding and friendship from others. Show them that the rough side of you is nothing else then a shield for your protection. And they have nothing to fear.


Elmore, a porcupine who lives in an old maple tree, feels lonely and decides to make some friends. There were many other animals in the woods he could play with.

So, he wrote a note and posted it on the trunk of the tree that held his house: “friends wanted.” Then he waited. Rabbits, hedgehogs and racoons, to name just a few, stopped by but didn’t dare to come closer. He was too prickly and hard to be around, they whispered.

Indeed, he had quills, spiky and sharp, that rattled when he shook his back. Though the quills were there to protect him from danger, they also scared away anyone who wanted to make friends with him. He wished he could do something about it. But what?

One day, his uncle stopped by. He noticed that Elmore was not himself. He was sad and troubled. Elmore complained to his uncle that his quills are the reason he doesn’t have friends. But his uncle did not agree. He said that Elmore should be proud of them, treasure them. After all he was a porcupine, and that’s how porcupines are.

Elmore thought about being a porcupine and when he went back in his den he noticed that the floor was littered with quills. He had an idea. He gathers them and sharpened them into pens and made several bundles. Then, he wrote a note and put it on the trunk of the tree: Elmore’s quill pens 100 percent real porcupine quills free.

His quill pens were well received by his neighbors who bought them all. Elmore even told them how to make ink out of berries and used them to write notes to their friend. But most of all, it didn’t look like the animals of the forest were afraid of Elmore anymore. They show their appreciation by writing friendly notes to him, one saying that the woods are lucky to have such a beautiful porcupine. Signed: “your friends”.


Elmore, a lonely porcupine who needs friends; Elmore’s uncle, an older porcupine who wears glasses; animals of the woods.


Holly Hobbie, the illustrator of this book, uses a clean brush and a focused visual to show the story in a compelling way. Her drawings are converging on the essential parts of the tale, depicting the characters in their environment in an economic way. No unnecessary details clutter the page, no out of order colors, no nonsense arrangement of the pictures. Overall, her soft colors and concise strokes makes the illustration enjoyable and compliments the storyline.

Theme: friendship

Recommended Age: 3 to 5

Reading Time: 5 minutes

Things to Learn

Porcupine: A porcupine is a small animal of the family of rodents. Specific to this animal is that his body is covered in spikes, or quills, that help him protect against predators.


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