cover image Science Fair Bunnies

Science Fair Bunnies

Kathryn Lasky. Candlewick Press (MA), $15.99 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-7636-0729-6

Bringing back the likable lapins from Lunch Bunnies and Show and Tell Bunnies, Lasky and Hafner again convey the trials and triumphs of elementary school with plenty of humor and unmistakable empathy. Clyde and Rosemary, his best friend and science-fair partner, are left high and dry for the science fair when the plants they have been growing for it suffer an untimely demise (as Clyde's big brother puts it, ""They croaked. Dead, dead, dead""). But as Clyde wiggles a very loose tooth, he gets an idea, and he and Rosemary decide to test how different substances affect the color of teeth. Clyde asks his father to yank the loose tooth and then convinces Rosemary to make the supreme sacrifice: forgoing the Tooth Fairy and donating her first-ever loose tooth to the cause. Lasky and Hafner have a knack for taking kids' concerns seriously and then persuading kids to laugh anyway. In one of the caper's funnier scenarios, a tutu-clad, winged rabbit Tooth Fairy appears to Clyde in a dream, surrounded by jars of teeth in different liquids, and announces, ""I just don't understand.... How could you do this to me?"" His equally droll response: ""Science. We did it for science."" The dialogue is on target at every turn, and the watercolor and ink pictures, best for their range of facial expressions, likewise hit the mark. Ages 4-7. (May)