Sandy Little's juvenile book, Montgomery Rabbit, has won several awards for early readers from various independent publishing groups, including an IPPY bronze medal. Second or third graders could read the book, but anyone would enjoy the story of a rabbit who falls into an adventure. The illustrations by David Wenzel are stunning.
Montgomery Rabbit is a lop-eared rabbit who lives in an enclosed yard. A young girl in dusty boots brings him raspberries in a silver bowl. He is quite content until the day she was late. He grows restless, and when he hears a rustle outside the hole in the fence, he peers through it. On the other side, he sees a gray field rabbit. His curiosity turns into an accidental adventure when he falls through the hole, and can't get back. He tries following the rabbit, but when he wears himself out, he stops in an open spot. The rabbit warns him he could be picked off by a hawk by sitting there. When Bentley, the field rabbit, introduces himself, the two are on the way to friendship.
The book is a story of friendship, of adventure as the two rabbit search for a fabled raspberry patch. Along the way, they have to help each other. They also find others along the way who guide them. Little's first book is a charming story of two strangers who develop a friendship despite their different appearances, different backgrounds, and different experiences. It's an interesting tool for discussion of differences and similarities with children.
Montgomery Rabbit is a delightful book to read with children. It's a book with such a subtle message that it can be read just as an enjoyable story. As I said, it's an award-winning book. But, before you pick up the book, I urge you to check it out on Amazon (have you ever seen me say that?), where you can see some of Wenzel's illustrations for this book. As enjoyable as the story is, the illustrations add so much. They're lush, beautiful pictures that add to the warmth of the story.
Montgomery Rabbit by Sandy Little. Illustrations by David Wenzel. Dog Ear Publishing. 2015. ISBN 9781457542923 (hardcover), 76p.
FTC Full Disclosure - The author sent me a copy of the book, hoping I would review it.