Posted by: Kathy Temean | April 14, 2022

Book Giveaway: THERE WAS A HOLE By Adam Lehrhaupt

Adam Lehrhaupt has a new picture book, THERE WAS A HOLE, illustrated by Carrie O’Neill and published by Sleeping Bear Press. They have agreed to send a copy to the one lucky winner in the US.

All you have to do to get in the running is leave a comment. Reblog, tweet, or talk about it on Facebook with a link and you will get additional chances to win. Just let me know other things you do to share the good news, so I can put the right amount of tickets in my basket for you. Sharing on Facebook, Twitter or reblogging really helps spread the word for a new book. So, thanks for helping Adam and Carrie.

If you have signed up to follow my blog and it is delivered to you everyday, please let me know when you leave a comment and I will give you an extra ticket. If you want to make sure you don’t miss seeing that you won, please click “Notify Me of Follow-Up Comments By Email” box. I will leave a comment in reply if you win the book. Thanks!


Lily has a hole. It eats her joy, makes her angry, and–no matter what Daddy does to try to help–it just keeps growing. So Lily retreats. But a friend lets her in on a secret (he has a hole too!) and shows her the best way to repair holes: spend time on friends, family, the things you love, yourself, and kindness. Those patches don’t make the hole go away, but they help. A lyrical and age-appropriate story for learning to cope with grief and loss.


When you publish a book, everyone wants to know ‘what’s it about?’ Usually this is an easy question to answer. But for some books, it’s not. Maybe the story covers multiple topics, or happens to be meta (Like lots of my books), or perhaps you’re covering a difficult subject. It’s that last one we’re going to talk about here.

At it’s heart, There Was a Hole is a book about loss. Everyone experiences loss in their lives. Even children’s book authors. Several years ago, I went through my own experience with loss. Actually, it was a series of losses in a row. And like any other person, these losses brought me to a difficult place. I began to exhibit self destructive behaviors. I began to spiral out of control. Finally, someone took me aside and told me I needed to find a better way to deal with my feelings.

So I began a search for a book that dealt with the emotions I was experiencing. Specifically in the kidlit realm, since that’s what I write. Unfortunately, sometimes you just can’t find a book that lines up. When that happens a good author takes matters in their own hands. Which I did. I wondered if I could write a story that acknowledged the feelings I had. That showed they were valid, normal feelings? And most importantly, that there were things I could do to help myself feel better.

It all started with the idea that I had a hole. A giant space inside myself that couldn’t be filled. That was how I felt. Something was missing and no matter what I did, I couldn’t make it better. Friends tried, family tried. Nothing helped.

Eventually I reached my lowest point.

I was sad.



Except there was something I didn’t know.

I wasn’t the only one with these feelings.

People around me had them too. Maybe not for the same reason. Or to the same extent, but they did. They all had their own, unique hole. A hole that they couldn’t fill either.

So I began to wonder what we could do to help. Not fix the hole, or make it go away, but the help each other understand why it was there…and how to accept it. How to move on.

That’s when the idea for THERE WAS A HOLE really took flight. Well, that and when I finally saw Carrie’s amazing illustrations. It was like everything in my head was laid pout on the page. She did an amazing job of bringing my words to life, and finding the heart of this story.


Anyway, I digress. I DID find a way to help myself. If you want to know what I did, you’ll need to read the book. It’s available anywhere books are sold on 4/15, but I recommend going to your local indie bookstore. There’s great people there who might help you find other books to read as well.

Thanks. A—


Adam Lehrhaupt is the award-winning picture book author of Warning: Do Not Open This Book!Please: Open This Book!Chicken in SpaceChicken in SchoolI Will Not Eat YouI Don’t Draw, I Color and Wordplay (Scholastic, July 25, 2017), as well as the upcoming This is a Good Story (S&S, September 9, 2017), Idea Jar (S&S, Spring 2018) and several more he is not yet at liberty to discuss. He has traveled to six continents, performed on Broadway, and lived on a communal farm. Adam firmly believes that opening a book is a good thing, even if there are monkeys in it. He currently lives in the suburbs of Philadelphia, PA, with his wife, two sons, and two bizarre dogs.

Among the awards his titles have won are the E.B. White Read-Aloud Honor, the Wanda Gag Read-Aloud Award and the Hudson Readers Thumbs Up Award. His books have also been honored among ALA notable books, Huffington Post notable books, CCBC Choices, Bank Street Choices, Ontario Library Association ‘Best Bets’ and more.

Adam has traveled to six continents, performed on Broadway, and lived on a communal farm. He firmly believes that opening a book is a good thing, even if there are monkeys in it. Adam currently lives in the suburbs of Philadelphia, PA, with his wife, two sons, and two bizarre dogs.

Follow Adam on Twitter or Instagram @Lehrhaupt and on Facebook @AdamLehrhaupt for the occasional brilliant thought or picture. He can also be found at


CARRIE O’NEILL writes and illustrates picture books. The Shed by Robert Broder (Little Bigfoot, 2020) was her debut as a picture-book illustrator. There Was A Hole by Adam Lehraupt is her second illustrated picture book. Carrie works in both digital and traditional media, incorporating handmade textures in gouache and ink into her illustrations.

Her illustrations have been recognized by Kirkus, The Society of Illustrators LA, and The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. Clients include Little Bigfoot, Sleeping Bear Press, and Ladybug Magazine. She works in both digital and traditional media, incorporating handmade textures in gouache and ink into her illustrations. She is currently working on a graphic memoir about growing up in the 1980’s, learning to navigate what it means to be a girl—and a woman—in the shadow of second wave feminism. Carrie prefers coffee to tea, cheering loudly for every runner at a cross-country meet, picking blueberries, and writing stories & drawing pictures for tender hearts. She is a member of SCBWI and lives in Olympia Washington. Carrie was featured recently on Illustrator Saturday. Click here to take a look. To see more of her work visit

Adam thank you for sharing your book and journey with us. I love the idea of being able to fill a hole from losing someone, since I am still filling a few holes and think this is a great way to help children deal with grief. Carrie’s illustrations are a joy to behold. Best of luck with the book.

Talk tomorrow,



  1. I find it shocking that it has taken this long to put such as important kidlit book into the world. We all know that grief is a part of all of our lives, and that grief most definitely leaves holes. (Even the anticipation of a hole can be devastating.) I am looking forward to reading this book. Virtual hugs to all.


  2. This book is so important, and I have tears brimming, reading and looking at the beautiful, gentle art by Carrie O’Neill. I need this book. We all do.


  3. I’m vying for this one! Like you, like so many of us… so many holes, big and small. I want to give this to many people.

    Pinterest pinned


  4. So many kids need books dealing with grief and loss, so I’m happy to see this one coming out. (I’m signed up for the emails and I RTed.)


  5. This author has helpful insight into grief and healing and I know this book will tough readers of all ages. I’m an email subscriber and shared:


  6. This is a much-needed book for young kids. I am tweeting and reblogging the post. Thanks Kathy and Adam!


  7. Reblogged this on Darlene Beck-Jacobson and commented:
    An important book for young people in dealing with loss…please share.


  8. This sounds like a wonderful story – and a great resource! Congratulations, Adam and Carrie!

    I follow by email and tweeted this post.


  9. What an amazing book. So many children and adults have holes. So simple. So sweet. Filled with compassion. Can’t wait to read.


  10. Look forward to reading this book. I know how difficult loss is–for people of any age.


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