Wednesday, July 1, 2009

The I Believe Bunny

The I Believe Bunny, the first in a series of titles attempting to teach kids to put their faith into action, is one of the best written and illustrated Christian picture books I've seen.

The book begins by quoting Philippians 4:13 ("I can do everything through him who gives me strength"). Then we meet a bunny who thanks God for his beautiful glen-home, but - with a bit of a pout - wishes it would stop raining. Suddenly he hears a little mouse yelling for help; it has fallen into the river and doesn't know how to swim. The bunny wonders what he, "just a small bunny" can do, but breaks a branch from a nearby tree and extends it out into the river.
"He reached out to the mouse,
but he started to slip.
The water was rushing.
He was losing his grip!

Then he prayed to God, 'Please,
can you help me right now?
I want to save this mouse,
but I don't know how.'"
Just as the bunny asks for God's strength, his animal friends come running to help. In no time, they've rescued the mouse.

The author concludes that when you have faith in God's love "nothing you try will be impossible for you...You CAN make a difference, even a bunny....your size."

What I Like: Penned by Tish Rabe, author of many Cat in the Hat books, and lyricist for a number of Sesame Street, Disney, and Nickelodeon songs, The I Believe Bunny is an excellent example of how to write a rhyming children's book. You'll find no forced text or imperfect rhymes here, and the rhythm of the rhyme is easy to read aloud.

Frank Endersby's illustrations are an excellent companion to the text, showing us a cute bunny and his friends in gentle hues. Each of his illustrations shows action, pulling young readers right into the story.

And, naturally, I appreciate how the story makes it clear our faith impacts our lives - if we allow it to.

What I Dislike: Nothing.

Overall Rating: Excellent.

Age Appeal: According to the publisher, 4 to 8, but many toddlers will also like this book.

Publisher Info: Thomas Nelson, 2009; ISBN: 1400314763; hardback, $9.99

Buy it Now at for $7.99

Or at for $9.99

Special Info: See author Tish Rabe's website for information about school visits and check out illustrator Frank Endersby's website for a look at his artwork.

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