cover image Big Rabbit’s Bad Mood

Big Rabbit’s Bad Mood

Ramona Badescu, , illus. by Delphine Durand. . Chronicle, $16.99 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-8118-6666-8

While Durand’s illustrations of Big Rabbit’s attempts to get rid of a bad mood will have readers giggling, the resolution of the conflict is disappointing. The expressive, orange rabbit is charming, despite his grumpiness, and his bad mood is portrayed as a furry, knuckle-dragging, gray creature who rides the vacuum cleaner, eats a radio, wipes his boogers on the carpet and “stuck to him like glue.” When Big Rabbit’s friends and even his mother don’t answer his pleas for help, he finally hits on the idea of putting arrows on the floor to show the recalcitrant, toddleresque bad mood the way out. However, it’s not until everyone surprises him with birthday presents that Big Rabbit’s bad mood actually disappears (“Not a hair, not a booger, not a trace”). While the visual representation of an emotional metaphor is witty, children may find the bad mood’s personification perplexing, and the misleading suggestion that a surprise birthday party is the best way to get rid of a bad mood undercuts the book’s usefulness. Ages 2–6. (May)