Purpose of this Blog...

You may have noticed that not all books are equal in capturing children's imaginations and in cultivating those innocent, tender souls. My goal is to help you find the ones that do!
(Painting by Mary Cassatt: "Mrs Cassatt Reading to her Grandchildren" -1888)

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

A VAMPIRE STORY...for children?

No, this isn't a post recommending the Twilight Series for kids.  Today I'd like to tell you about a story involving a strange rabbit, humorously told from the perspective of a Dog named Harold..."I come to writing purely by chance.  My fulltime occupation is dog". 

We learn how Harold's family, the Monroes, acquire ownership of a bunny, who - according to the family's slightly paranoid Cat, Chester - has some strange vampire-like characteristicsThe name of this vampire rabbit?


He is so named by the Monroes because they found him at a movie theatre where they had been watching a Dracula film.  

And what are Bunnicula's vampire-like traits that Chester-the-book-loving-Cat is so eager to convince Harold the Dog of?  

Bunnicula has sharp little "fangs",

he has a black mark on his back resembling a cape

he sleeps by day

and he sucks the juice out of vegetables 
until they turn white

In reality, Bunnicula, who can't even talk, is no threat to anyone whatsoever. But Chester the Cat is determined throughout the story to have Harold try and kill Bunnicula, which makes for some very comedic plot action. (And a good Halloween story!)

What makes Deborah and James Howe's 1979 vampire bunny book so popular?  He said he thinks readers of all ages are fascinated by the secret lives of animals, much like the ones he's created in his books. "I imagined that as soon as we leave the room, they start talking to each other," Howe said. "It makes it fun for the reader that the animals have this whole life that people are clueless about."
(Quote source HERE)

There are other books in the Bunnicula series, but both of my boys and I only read this first one (and we loved it).  The books are for 8-12 year olds and are great for reading aloud.  By the way, do you know who Chester the Cat is named after?

If you liked this post, you might like last year's Halloween post: A CAT IN THE DARK.

1 comment: