Learning to Say Goodbye….Goodbye, Hobbs

Goodbye Hobbs by Emma Bettridge & Jospehine Birch

Learning to say goodbye is one of the most difficult lessons. That feeling of love and loss; of not knowing what to do or how to do just normal things is overwhelming. Here’s a picture book that just might help…


author: Emma Bettridge

illustrator: Josephine Birch

Graffeg Ltd (11 October 2022)

ISBN: 9781802582222

Merlin doesn’t want to go out; not without Hobbs. All Merlin can feel; all he can see is the empty space. But off he goes anyway; down the familiar route, up the lane by the house, across the fields…through the gate. But wait. What’s that familiar smell? Will it help him learn to say “goodbye Hobbs”?

This is a story about what it means to love and lose a friend; and how to find a reason to carry on. The writing is simple with an easy and familiar-feeling flow; the rhythm of ordinary life written with a clear eloquence that evokes emotion. The beautiful line and watercolour pictures convey the atmosphere of sorrow; the sense of autumn both in the outer world and inside, in the heart. And the posing and positioning of Merlins’ body, the expressions given to his face deliver the feelings perfectly. The loss of a much loved friend is clear. Warning: if you have ever lost a loved one, you will shed tears. But you will also find heart here. As we near the end of the book, hope lifts up into the story. We understand the simplest of things…those we love never truly leave us. Quiet, meaningful, filled with feeling…a book that helps you find reasons to go for a walk again. Beautiful.

I am posting this today as I remember our dear Molly. It has been six months to the day that we lost our dear friend. It’s hard. I still expect her to come to the door when I return home from work. There are times when I still reach for her food bowl…or stare at her unused bed. This book has helped…there are reasons to go for a walk.

Thank you to Graffeg, Ltd for sending this lovely, heartfelt book just when I needed it most. https://graffeg.com/products/goodbye-hobbs


6 thoughts on “Learning to Say Goodbye….Goodbye, Hobbs

  1. Sorry to hear about your dear Molly. My Dad passed this year and I still find little things a bit of a challenge. Books about death for children are so important especially ones that sound so sensitively written as you’ve reviewed here.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am so very sorry. Books about death are very important. They give a venue to open conversations about feelings surrounding loss and how to take them forward. Also, books about death for children are also so incredibly beneficial for adults. They speak on that heartfelt level that we all need during grief.
      I know so many people who have lost loved ones this year. I’m going to do a post on books to help in the near future.

      Liked by 3 people

  2. This sounds like a lovely book. My sweet dog, Boo Boo, died almost 10 years ago. I will always miss him. He was such a comfort to me, and I hope that I was a comfort to him:) I certainly understand how you feel about Molly. It gets a bit easier but will always be with you.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This hit home. My dog is aging and I see signs of decline and I wonder ‘how much longer’. I am glad there are books to help with the sorrow. There is no loss like that of a pet, particularly a dog.

    Liked by 1 person

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