In a bedside conversation originally published in French, a bunny frets about a wolf’s coming while Mom tallies all the obstacles that will keep it away.
Badel’s loose, humorous cartoons extend Ouyessad’s all-dialogue exchange with opposing tongue-in-cheek scenes of two very long-eared rabbits—one huddled anxiously beneath the sheets, the other puttering about the cozy bedroom—on verso and a feral-looking wolf on recto. The latter can be seen evading hunters blasting away at random, sneaking into the city by pretending to be just a large dog, adroitly avoiding traffic, creeping into a certain building…but “he would not get to our apartment.” “How can you be sure?” “We live on the fifth floor, and wolves do not know how to take the elevator!” “Mom! Do you really think that a wolf who has already managed to do all this will stop because of an elevator?” Finally a firm “Goodnight, my rabbit,” would seem to settle the matter…until there comes a knock at the door followed by the revelation that it was all a setup; the little bunny hurtles across a living room where a birthday party has plainly just taken place, throws open the door, and gives the gift-bearing wolf standing there a mighty hug: “I was sure you would come!” Young audiences sure that the young bunny was about to become a menu item will happily request repeat readings.
This mischievous bit of topsy-turvy is a thoroughgoing delight. (Picture book. 5-7)