First published nearly 40 years ago, Zolotow's ingenuous paean to spring, a time ""when everything lovely begins once again,"" indeed feels reborn with Craig's (Angelina Ballerina) winsome illustrations. Combining full-page spreads with smaller panels and spots, her ink, watercolor and colored-pencil art draws from a sumptuous palette of Easter egg colors that reaches full bloom at tale's end, when spring finally catches up to the lonely bunny in search of companionship. When a sleepy owl tells the solo bunny that ""there are always rabbits at Easter,"" he attempts to hunt the place down. Youngsters will be tickled by this misunderstanding and will enjoy having a leg up on the long-eared fellow. Equally gratifying are Craig's renderings of the antics of a diminutive mouse who trails and apes the wandering bunny. In the spirit of a true quest, both travelers are rewarded for their journey: each ends up with a loving mate--and seven offspring. Snuggling with his brood, ""The bunny's heart throbbed with happiness at this wonderful earthsmelling sunlit bunny-filled world."" Like the endearing protagonist, Zolotow's unabashedly sweet, endearing tale of new life finds its match with Craig's gentle landscapes and cuddly characters. Ages 4-8. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 02/23/1998 Release date: 02/01/1998 Genre: Children's
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