Swamper: Letters from a Louisiana Swamp Rabbit

Amy Griffin Ouchley. Louisiana State Univ., $22.50 (72p) ISBN 978-0-8071-5074-0
Ouchley, a naturalist, blends fact and fiction in this curious story about an obscure species. Shortly after Ouchley spies a swamp rabbit while leading students on a field trip through the Louisiana bottomland hardwood forest, the rabbit, "Swamper," strikes up a written correspondence with her. In 12 casual yet eloquent letters, Swamper describes his habitat and daily life and shares anecdotes about animal friends and predators. This first-person anthropomorphic perspective sometimes sits at odds with the scientific details about the swamp and its ecology. Ouchley includes information about ecosystems, food chains, and wetlands (photographs and realistic sketches are interspersed), but Swamper's loquaciousness may test patience: "Once I dreamed of a beautiful rabbit. Her fur was golden and glossy. It glistened in the moonlight. Her ears were long, soft, and silky. Her eyes sparkled. She moved with graceful leaps by the edge of the bayou. When she sat up, she groomed her long ears in a slow, gentle motion with her front paws. As I began to hop toward her, I woke up and she was gone." Not since Watership Down has a rabbit had so much to say. Ages 4–8. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 04/29/2013
Release date: 05/01/2013
Open Ebook - 72 pages - 978-0-8071-5076-4
Hardcover - 978-0-8071-5077-1
Open Ebook - 72 pages - 978-0-8071-5075-7
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