The Kiss that Missed is an instant winner from David Melling. I know he’s written a lot, but I’ve only encountered Hugless Douglas so far. On the basis of this one, I’ll be hunting his others down.
A bedtime kiss that bypasses its royal target and is chased through the wild wood by a slightly inept knight and his very understanding horse. There are scary things in the wild wood – swooping owls, dribbly wolves and bears, but the kiss calms then all and wishes them good night. The tired knight and his horse sit down for a rest on a tree trunk, but all is not as it seems…
Mild peril, and whimsical language. I love how the kiss is shown floating through the story embossed in silver – and Smallest enjoys tracing its path through the pages, narrating as she goes. There’s marvellous detail, (you’ll want to pay attention to close up shots of very large eyes) and although it’s silly, it’s a very endearing kind of silly.
It’s got: a kiss, and a bedtime story, and a loyal knight.
It’s not: the royal family as we know it.