Tuesday, December 09, 2014

That Rabbit Belongs to Emily Brown by Cressida Cowell

Emily Brown is a daring girl with simple tastes. All she requires is a companion for her adventures to outer space or the Amazon is her well-loved rabbit, Stanley. He is the perfect sidekick. However, someone else in the kingdom has taken notice of Emily’s fluffy friend and she wants Stanley all to herself.

Her Royal Highness, Queen Gloriana the Third sends in her army, navy, and air force to collect the rabbit that she has decided to rename, “Bunnywunny.” Each time the queen’s men are rebuffed by Emily Brown who declares, “This rabbit is NOT for sale. And his name isn’t Bunnywunny. It’s STANLEY.” The queen’s men are so insistent that eventually Emily Brown posts a sign to her garden door with the above statement boldly displayed.

The queen does at least offer Emily Brown gifts in exchange for her friend, Stanley. The queen starts by proposing an exchange—Stanley aka Bunnywunny for a brand-new golden teddy bear. As the queen becomes more desperate for the stuffed bunny, Emily Brown’s potential gifts multiply until she is offered, “all the toys she could ever desire.” But Emily Brown’s devotion to Stanley is true and she will not be swayed by extravagant toys.

In the end, the queen resorts to treachery to acquire Stanley but she is disappointed with the results. It is then up to Emily Brown to educate Queen Gloriana on the importance of play and friendship. For more picture books on stuffed friends check out the adventures of Trixie and Knuffle Bunny in Knuffle Bunny: A Cautionary Tale by Mo Willems. If you would like to read a story about a demanding princess with a surprising ending, you may enjoy Princess Justina Albertina: A Cautionary Tale by Ellen Dee Davidson

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