From 2010-2012, I wrote a blog called Spine Label. At the time, I was working towards my master's degree in library science, as well as working in a public library (primarily in youth services). Spine Label was where I reviewed books, discussed programs I was implementing at my library, and occasionally wrote about library science more broadly. Spine Label is no longer online; the domain name was my maiden name and it didn't make a whole lot of sense to keep it, particularly once I left my public library job. Happily, I still have access the contents of the blog, which my husband is fond of saying is the best thing I've ever written (I'm not sure what that means for everything I've worked on since then, but I'm going with it). Since I'm writing about children's literature again, I thought it would be nice to revisit the reviews that were once posted on Spine Label, as a way of both looking at backlist titles as well as giving the reviews a proper home on the Internet again. It's worth noting that these reviews were written from the perspective of a public librarian and not necessarily the perspective of a parent.
I could love this book based on the cover alone!
This edition was published in 2008, an adaptation of the original story (and Caldecott Honor) published in 1942.
Marshmallow is a baby rabbit who has taken up residence in the home of Oliver, a tabby cat who is quite okay with being an only pet. But Marshmallow is very cute, and eventually Oliver concedes and the two become friends. According the author’s bio on the jacket flap, this is a completely true story (which makes me love it more!).
Newberry’s illustrations are soft, warm and remarkably realistic. The illustrations are done in black and white, with bits of peachy-pink added in the appropriate places.
Overall, a very sweet story about shifting family dynamics and friendship. Plus, how many children’s books feature house rabbits? Not many.
Take a look at this website for more of Newberry’s illustrations.