cover image Moon Rabbit

Moon Rabbit

Natalie Russell, . . Viking, $16.99 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-670-01170-4

A demure bunny discovers that friendship, no matter how warm, cannot lure her away from the life she loves. Little Rabbit adores the city (“She had her own place to stay, her favorite cafe, and so many things to see and do”), but wonders if there is someone out there “just like her.” Then she meets Brown Rabbit. Brown Rabbit lives in the park and plays the guitar; for a time, they are happy together (“They made each other laugh, and Little Rabbit was happy to have found a new friend”). But Little Rabbit begins to miss the city, and nothing Brown Rabbit offers (“He even stood on his head”) can change that. The resolution is constructive: Little Rabbit returns to the city, and Brown Rabbit soon arrives for a visit. Russell's full-bleed prints, in milky aquas, olives and pinks, mix childlike and sophisticated elements. Little Rabbit and Brown Rabbit are drawn as simple outlines, Pat-the-Bunny style, while buildings are more carefully drafted, with shadowy customers glimpsed through windows. Children (and adults) will appreciate this gentle take on the often-perplexing conflict between satisfied independence and the joys of companionship. Ages 3–up. (May)