Buy This Book
Other books you may enjoy
“But you can’t choose to give up when something gets hard, Emma. Everything has hard parts, especially when it’s new,” Mom. –Because of the Rabbit
Because of the Rabbit
by Cynthia Lord
On the last night of summer, Emma tags along with her father, who is a game warden, on a routine call. They’re supposed to rescue a wild rabbit from a picket fence, but instead, they find a little bunny. Emma convinces her father to bring him home for the night.
The next day, Emma starts public school for the very first time after years of being home-schooled. More than anything, Emma wants to make a best friend in school. But things don’t go as planned. On the first day of school, she’s paired with a boy named Jack for a project. He can’t stay on topic, he speaks out of turn, and he’s obsessed with animals. Jack doesn’t fit in, and Emma’s worried he’ll make her stand out. Emma and Jack bond over her rescue rabbit, but will their new friendship keep Emma from finding the new best friend she’s meant to have?
Because of the Rabbit combines several subplots into one story. Not only is Emma struggling with attending public school for the first time, but she also is upset that her brother, Owen, has less time for her. Emma’s family demonstrates healthy relationships and positive communication skills. Emma revisits tales that her grandfather shared with her. She also names her pet rabbit Monsieur Lapin after a character from her grandfather’s stories.
Attending public school isn’t an easy transition for Emma. The author does an excellent job describing Emma’s complex feelings in kid-friendly language. Like many students, Emma hopes to find a best friend and worries that telling the whole truth will make others dislike her. One of her classmates, who appears to have autism, is kind to Emma. Even though Emma likes spending time with the boy, she worries that others will judge her if she spends time with him. In the end, Emma learns that it is important to look at things from another person’s perspective. Emma realizes that “I’ve wanted them all to be the kind of friend I needed, but I hadn’t tried as hard to be the one they needed.”
Anyone who has ever been left out of a group or is facing a new school will relate to Emma. Because of the Rabbit is beautifully written and has many positive life lessons. However, the story focuses on Emma’s personal conflicts. Readers who enjoy fast-paced, adventure stories will have a difficult time staying engaged. Because of the short chapters and easy vocabulary, Because of the Rabbit would be an excellent story for a parent to read aloud to their child.
Drugs and Alcohol