Picture Books – Little Rabbit Who Liked to Say Moo

Little Rabbit, disappointed that rabbits have no “big sound” decides to try out the noises of the other animals. When Calf comes along, he wonders why Little Rabbit is mooing, and, when the situation is explained, suggests they trying baaing together. Soon enough Lamb, Piglet, Duckling, and Baby Donkey have joined them, and the farmyard is ringing with animal sounds.

Any book that features lots of loud animal noises is a sure hit during story times. This book is helped along by uncluttered illustrations in Jonathan Allen’s easily identifiable style. The animals are front and center, with only very minimal backgrounds -usually just a green smudge representing grass- reflecting the idea that the center of the story is the animals themselves. While this choice necessarily negates any “background stories” or intricate pictures that provide hours of entertainment in trying to figure out what subtle events are happening in the background, the more direct approach will appeal to many young children. Not everyone is attracted to “busy” backgrounds (witness the massively positive reactions to Mo Willem’s Elephant and Piggy books).

This isn’t a major contribution to the literature. No dogs die or Important Life Lessons are learned. But it succeeds admirably for what it wants to be: a cute, appealing, and highly readable story that will quickly become part of the “Read it again, Mommy” canon.

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