Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Rabbit Hill

Rabbit Hill

Robert Lawson
For ages 8 to 10
Penguin, 1977   ISBN: 978-0670586752

All the animals on Rabbit Hill are excited because “New Folks are coming” to live in the Big House. For a long time the house and its gardens have been neglected and this has made life on Rabbit Hill very hard for the Small Animals. There have been no fresh vegetables, no grain, and no seeds or nuts. There have also been some very hard winters.

   Now everyone is hopeful that good times could lie ahead, but they are cautiously optimistic. After all, the New Folks could have cats or dogs. They could be the kind of people who don’t plant gardens. They could be the kind of people who use traps, guns, or poison to kill Small Animals.

   At last, after much watching and waiting, the New Folks arrive. They do have a cat but he is so old and lazy that no one really considers him to be a threat to the wild animals. The much hoped for garden is planted and Willie, the field mouse, gives the animals reports on what the Folks are up to inside the house.

   Bit by bit the New Folks show their new animal neighbors that they are Good Folks, the kind of Folks who are considerate of little animals and their needs. There are some animals however, who are still suspicious of the New Folks, and when disaster strikes, these are the animals who are eager to blame the New Folks for everything that goes wrong.

   This book won the Newbery Award in 1945, and it has stood the test of time very well. With delightful characters, an easy to follow story, and a heartwarming ending, this is a title young animal lovers will greatly enjoy.