The Velveteen Rabbit

The Velveteen Rabbit

4.5 169
by Margery Williams, David Jorgensen

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Margery Williams' famous story tells of a young boy and his treasured favorite toy, a splendid "fat and bunchy" rabbit, whose ears are lined with pink sateen. He carries it everywhere, talks to it, pretends with it, sleeps with it each night. The love he steadfastly bestows on his toy helps him through a serious illness and afterwards saves his beloved bunny from a…  See more details below


Margery Williams' famous story tells of a young boy and his treasured favorite toy, a splendid "fat and bunchy" rabbit, whose ears are lined with pink sateen. He carries it everywhere, talks to it, pretends with it, sleeps with it each night. The love he steadfastly bestows on his toy helps him through a serious illness and afterwards saves his beloved bunny from a terrible fate.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Lou Fancher sensitively adapts Margery Williams's The Velveteen Rabbit, illus. by Steve Johnson and Fancher, while maintaining the magic of the original. The inviting oil paintings ingeniously portray the boy's toy rabbit with button eyes, shaped like those of the real rabbits living in the nearby woods; as the stuffed rabbit is transformed by love, the artists seem to inject animation into its eyes, depicting its metamorphosis into a living, breathing being.
Children's Literature - Marilyn Courtot
The story has been abridged, too much so, to fit this die cut board version. It isn't the same story and lacks the strong emotional pull of the original. Undoubtedly, it will raise a few questions and some concerns such as why did the boy's toys have to be thrown away? However, it is still one that kids who have a beloved stuffed animal can relate to. The soft pastel illustrations suit the short text.
School Library Journal
K-Gr 3—"Weeks passed, and the little Rabbit grew very old and shabby...." Spirin's winsome portrait of the begrimed rabbit beautifully conveys the poignancy in this enduring tale of a much-loved toy. The fulsome story is handsomely assembled in a large square book with text pages framed in simple folk-art elements and occasional small rabbits. Often the text pages face a full-page watercolor view of the Boy, his Nana, the nursery, or the rabbits—the one that is velveteen and those that are real. There are also several sets of facing text pages, this being more than a picture book in the traditional definition. One double-page painting displays the splendid array of nursery toys among which the small stuffed rabbit finds himself at the outset, and toward the end there's a sweeping image of the fairy as she carries him off to the woods for his final transformation. Though the fanciful story may seem wordy by today's standards, it continues to resonate in recounting that ever-occurring incidence of a child's beloved toy that is finally abandoned. Spirin's handsome rendering, with a look that is at once old-fashioned and timeless, offers reading to be savored by viewers and listeners of many ages. A tribute to Margery Williams and how she came to write the story appears at the end.—Margaret Bush, Simmons College, Boston
Kirkus Reviews
In his note to the reader, Fancher (The Range Eternal, p. 1222, etc.) writes, "I’ve shortened the text to allow more room for the artwork," as an explanation for this abbreviated version of the beloved classic. Shortened indeed: Williams’s poetic passage introducing the Skin Horse has been reduced to: "The Skin Horse was old and wise, and he knew all about being Real." The rest is pared down to match, leaving a tale that does still—faintly—echo the original’s lyricism, but is less likely to lose the attention of, as Fancher puts it, "a wiggly two-year-old" being forced to listen to it. The art is, as promised, all full-paged and space-filling: quiet compositions in which the Velveteen Rabbit, the Boy, and other figures are large, soft-surfaced forms, viewed close-up, and from a child’s-eye level to enhance the feeling of intimacy. The tale’s more philosophical aspects will still elude most of the nursery school set, but sharing this summary may make some listeners more receptive to the Real story, when they’re old enough to appreciate it. On the other hand, perhaps they’ll think they’ve read it already. Why not just wait? (Picture book. 3-5)
Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
Hague's paintings of the Boy who loves his velveteen rabbit are gentle, romantic, and faithful.
In an assessment of artistic merit combined with . . . child appeal, Michael Hague's book comes up the winner.
From the Publisher
"Well done. A good read-aloud for small groups of children."--School Library Journal.
Children's Literature - Beverley Fahey
With so many versions of this classic story available, parents seeking to purchase just the right one have a difficult time. For those who find the original art by William Nicholson dated, this latest edition may be the perfect fit. The unabridged text relates the story of the ?fat and bunchy" stuffed rabbit with the soft brown and white coat that is a Christmas gift for a small boy and follows him on his journey to be loved and to be real. The outstanding feature here is the illustrations. Spirin's rich palette evokes a era long ago and he is as much at home depicting toys with hard edges and surfaces as he is with the soft round cherubic face of the boy or the plush texture of the rabbit. Alternating pages of full text are handsomely bordered and the crisp white pages add to the elegant design. The story may, by today's standards, seem a bit sentimental but it is nonetheless a perennial favorite. In lieu of the original, this is the one to own. Reviewer: Beverley Fahey
Children's Literature - Lois Rubin Gross
There is nothing groundbreaking in this lovely gift edition of a childhood classic, and that is just fine. Margery Williams’ fairy tale of a stuffed bunny made “Real” by the love of a child has retained its audience throughout the decades because it is such a beautiful and touching part of childhood; a book that is shared from generation to generation. Interestingly, in the ninety-two year old text, there remains one essential truism: mechanical toys may come and go, but the toys that are truly loved by most children are the “stuffies” that provide youngsters with security and warmth. This new edition of the book is crafted beautifully, with gilt touches on the cover and illuminations around the page numbers. The cloth cover will not take well to many library circulations. Also, the book plate on the title page may encourage youngsters to practice their printing skills instead of writing the name of a fortunate recipient of the book, as intended. The original illustrations by William Nicholson have been digitally remastered so that the nursery animals and wild rabbits are shown as they were originally drawn. This is not to disparage the Gennardy Spirin illustrations or the Michael Hague version of the book, but it is lovely to see the soft-focus, primary colored double paged spreads from the original. The end papers are festooned with yellow, blue, and white bunnies of both the live and stuffed varieties. The language of the text is as beautiful and meaningful as always with no alterations. It is worth noting that the concept of burning a child’s toys after an illness may be disturbing to little ones. Read aloud from this classic, then continue on to DiCamillo’s The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane for tales of brave nursery rabbits that embark on unexpected adventures. Reviewer: Lois Rubin Gross; Ages 5 to 10.

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Product Details

Random House Children's Books
Publication date:
Knopf Book and Cassette Classics Series
Product dimensions:
10.24(w) x 12.20(h) x (d)
Age Range:
4 - 6 Years

Read an Excerpt

"What is REAL?" asked the Rabbit one day, when they were lying side by side near the nursery fender, before Nana came to tidy the room. "Does it mean having things that buzz inside you and a stick-out handle?"

"Real isn't how you are made," said the Skin Horse. "It's a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real."

"Does it hurt?" asked the Rabbit.

"Sometimes," said the Skin Horse, for he was always truthful. "When you are Real you don't mind being hurt."

"Does it happen all at once, like being wound up," he asked, "or bit by bit?"

"It doesn't happen all at once," said the Skin Horse. "You become. It takes a long time. That's why it doesn't often happen to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don't matter at all, because once you are Real you can't be ugly, except to people who don't understand."

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The Velveteen Rabbit (Enhanced Edition) 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 169 reviews.
Rayginc More than 1 year ago
This was my favorite book when I was a child. To this day, it still gets me choked up. Very touching story of the love a child has for his toy and what that love has done for the rabbit. Beautiful illustrations to keep a child interested in the pages and the story. Sniff, Sniff.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is my standard baby shower gift along with a B&N gift care. The story is timeless and the illustrations are lovely.
KYmomma More than 1 year ago
I recently purchased this book for my 4 and 5 year olds. I thought that it was beautifully illustrated. Of course the story is a classic, and at this great price it is a perfect addition to your children's library.
D_M_White More than 1 year ago
A classic story for young and old whose message we never outgrow.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
lovely app, nicely colored and implemented)
Briona Nichols More than 1 year ago
Read it at the library
farmmom More than 1 year ago
The intrinsic value of attachment on an emotional level-hence real love- is a great reminder for anyone of any age. Total value in this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
yeah, that was a nice surprise to have this book here!
nico619 More than 1 year ago
Great rendition and illustration of The Velveteen Rabbit. Quite pleasant to read to children. They understand it and really correlate it with the illustrations in the book. The price was right. It's a great read. If you can find it buy it.
mom-of-2nj More than 1 year ago
I really like this book. It has nice pictures. The story is interesting. Although I bought it along with a stuffed rabbit, I'm holding on to it until my kids are bigger. They are two and a half. I think the rating for 4 and over is appropriate. There are two many words for younger readers and perhaps the story itself is better suited to an older child. I would not want my kids to think I'm going to take away their toys if they get sick. I think you could explain it better to a child over 4. I am looking forward to giving this to my kids when they are older. By then, they will have more imagination and be happy for the rabbit who becomes real.
janrich More than 1 year ago
Got this book for my little neice. This is a great story and the illustrations in this book are wonderful! I think this book is a good one for every age.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
adore the rabbit, the graphics is just the best.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a classic book and a must for all children. I bought it for my granddaughter but had to wait until she was able to read the book. She enjoyed it and it is a book you read and always remember.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This story is one that I have read for years to my students at school during my career,to my children at home during their youth, and now to my grandchildren at their homes during Easter. It is timeless and beyond a 'classic'. I sent this to my youngest grandchild for her Easter present this year. She will start school next fall and just loved the story and the stuffed Velveteen bunny that accompanied it. Thank you for making this available for purchase online, swift mailing, and arrival in good condition. I will definitely utilize your services again.
techgeekintraining More than 1 year ago
one of my favorite books growing up. bought it as a present. awesome price
PetersenwithanE More than 1 year ago
This is the same artwork that I remember reading when I was a kid, so I really wanted to get this version for my baby on the way. Great classic book. It gets me all teary-eyed :)
kitty13JF More than 1 year ago
I just recieved this today and was amazed at the Vintage aapeal of the book! The illistrations arent too done up and very good, easy on the eye. There almost like a pen and ink 1800s look! The paper looks like parchment paper if it isnt i dont know? But the book blew my mind! I ordered it because of the front cover being so antiqued looking and i was right it is an antique! Though it is new! I would expect to find this in an attic of a luxurious house! And the story is the classic velveteen rabbit! Deffinately a GREAT BUY!
slaydon More than 1 year ago
this book should be on the shelf of every child. We all remember the story of a stuffed toy that is loved so much it becomes real. This magical story is def one i would recommend
LouII More than 1 year ago
My philosophy (metaphysics) teacher in college used The Velveteen Rabbit to teach metaphysics in college. I have loved the book ever since. I give it to parents of adopted children (as one of mine was) to teach the power of love.
TTMaree More than 1 year ago
I truly believe every child should have this book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Until this book was given to my son I'd never heard of it. After reading it to him I now like it as much as he does and we read it often.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I wish you could give it no stars. This one is terrible. It is mising a lot ofcpages and has duplicates of others instead. :-(
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Wish this was a read and play but other than that, the book sounds pretty good so far after reading the sample :)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Just as I remembered it as a little girl.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great children's story...I'm actually using a passage from it for my wedding reading so that's why I bought the book(again) after all these years. Would recommend it for anyone!