My Friend Rabbit
Ages 4 to 7
Roaring Brook Press, 2002, 1-59643-080-X
Rabbit is the kind of fellow who is a truly wonderful friend and who really does mean to do the best thing. The problem is that the results of his actions often fail to meet up to his good intentions. On this particular occasion he has thrown - quite my accident of course - Mouse’s airplane into a high tree and now Mouse is in tears because he cannot get his airplane down.
Rabbit is not the kind of animal to give up however. He has an idea and races off to get help. One by one he brings a collection of animals over to the tree. He drags in an elephant by the tail; he pushes a rhino across the ground; he carries a hippo, a deer, a crocodile, a bear, and a goose. Then Rabbit stacks up all these poor creatures to try to reach the airplane on its high branch. Alas the pile of animals is still not quite high enough until Mouse joins in. Then, though the airplane is retrieved, Rabbit finds himself in yet another pickle.
This is a delightfully warm and funny tribute to a wonderful character and to true friendship. Though there can be no doubt that Rabbit has a tendency to get himself into trouble, one cannot help admiring him for his creativity and determination to fix the problems he creates.
Beautiful block print style illustrations in bold colors show Rabbit racing from page to page, carrying the reader ever onward. Startled characters (or parts of characters) appear as Rabbit cajoles them across a simple grassy scene. As the book is mostly wordless this is a story which will particularly delight children who are still novice readers.
This unique picture book won the 2003 Caldecott Medal for best picture book of the year.
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