cover image Rooter Remembers

Rooter Remembers

Joanne F. Oppenheim. Viking Children's Books, $11.95 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-670-82865-4

These two books introduce the Carrotville Adventure series from the Bank Street College of Education. In the first, greedy Rooter Rabbit eats one of his mother's freshly baked carrot pot pies. When Mama Rabbit realizes one is missing, Rooter insists he is not the culprit and tells her a real whopper. Later, he is overcome with guilt and confesses the truth. In the second book, each Rabbit family female is permitted to choose one ribbon from peddler Ribbon Rabbit. Margaret Rose, however, is disappointed with her selection--she thinks sister Rhoda's rainbow ribbon is prettier. Margaret Rose steals the coveted ribbon and runs away, but returns home to face the music when Ribbon Rabbit convinces her that she is lucky to have a family. Designed to ``reinforce values every parent wishes to impart,'' these books' messages are heavy-handed. The writing is didactic, and silly verses like ``Once you start lying, it's hard to stop, / but sooner or later, a lie will pop!'' carry the subtlety of a sledgehammer. Munsinger's ( The Wizard, the Fair, and the Magic Chicken ; Tacky the Penguin ) artwork is cheery--her rabbits are particularly emotive and energetic. Ages 3-8. (Mar.)