PreS-Gr 1-At the pastry shop, Rosie, her little brother, and Mama see a rabbit and her child who buy bread but can't afford cupcakes. Mama explains that some rabbits are poor and suggests that Rosie put some of her extra toys and clothes in a bag for them. The little rabbit selects some almost-new toys and a scratchy new party dress she hates. That night, she has a dream about the rabbit in the shop crying over these items, and in the morning replaces them with a favorite sweatshirt, tea set, and teddy bear. Mama thinks these things are too old and suggests the new ones instead. Rosie compromises and envisions the rabbit and her brother enjoying the used toys and their mother being impressed with the new dress. Sweet's attractive watercolors add personality to the characters and enhance the mood of the story. This simple tale with a contemporary lesson would be a good introduction to a discussion of poverty and charity.-Nancy A. Gifford, Schenectady County Public Library, NY
While shopping with her rabbit family, Rosie notices that another rabbit mother does not buy her child a cupcake treat. When Rosie asks her own mother why not, Mama suggests the other family may not have the money. Later, Mama proposes that Rosie give some extra toys and clothes to poor rabbits. The hard puzzle and the ugly doll are easy to give, but Rosie struggles when it comes to giving up items she loves. It's not clear who will receive Rosie's gifts (Rosie thinks they'll go to the rabbit family she saw at the beginning of the book), and the story doesn't explore what it feels like to receive giveaways. But Rosie's journey to generosity is well realized, and the illustrations of delicate pastel comforters, toys, and clothing show the softness of Rosie's world and how far she must travel to imagine hardship.