As he writes more books Meindert De Jong's prose takes on more of the exciting rhythms and emotions that make it thrillingly close to life itself. In this he writes of his native Holland, a farm, and small Davie's ownership of his first pet- a black rabbit named Shadrach. Davie lives a tense, breathlessly active week before Shadrach's arrival. He ponders a name and knows that ""Shadrach"" sounds like ""black"". He runs out to collect clover, only to be told by his big brother Rem that rabbits get ""bloat"" from that particular variety. When Shadrach comes, Davie loves and cares for him fervently, and when the rabbit is lost, goes through a hectic midnight search. Deepening the story is the astute but warmly related pattern of changing family relationships as Davie matures as a person himself.