PPBF: Mr. Rabbit and the Lovely Present

In honor of Charlotte Zolotow – June 26, 1915 – November 19, 2013 –  poet, editor, publisher and author of more than 70 picture books.

Mr. Rabbit and the Lovely Present cover

Author: Charlotte Zolotow
Illustrator: Maurice Sendak
Publisher: Scholastic Book Services, 1968 (originally published in 1962)
Age: 4-8
Themes: rabbits, birthdays, color
Opening: “Mr. Rabbit,” said the little girl, “I want help.” ” Help, little girl, I’ll give you help if I can, ” said Mr. Rabbit.
Summary: (from my library catalog) Mr. Rabbit helps a little girl find a colorful present for her mother’s birthday. Mrs. Zolotow had submitted it as The Color Book, but it was turned down because it was initially a collection of poems without any children or relationships. Eventually she revised it, using color to help a child choose a birthday gift (see resource link below for more). Persistence paid off: it is one of her most popular books and now available in many languages.

Why I like this book: is Mr. Rabbit’s personality, his matter-of-fact dry but gentle humor, and his patience with the little girl demanding his help. Most of all his final wish for her mother’s birthday…” a happy basket of fruit.”

Resources/Activities: Read more on how the book came about on the Charlotte Zolotow website – HERE ; prepared activities from Live Oak Media – HERE

For more Perfect Picture Book Friday picks and parent/teacher resources go to Susanna Hill’s blog – HERE