Emmaline and the Bunny Book Poster Image

Emmaline and the Bunny



Engaging bunny tale with clever wordplay, lovely artwork.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The mayor of the town is pretty mean and grumpy.

Violence & scariness

A rabbit is almost eaten by a hawk, and a man goes into a rant only to almost blow himself up.

Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that there's not too much to worry about here aside from a close call between a bunny and a hawk and some antics by an intimidating, blowhard of a politician.

Kids say

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What's the story?

Emmaline is very messy and noisy and wants a bunny more than anything else. Unfortunately for her, she lives in Neatasapin, a town with a pushy, mean mayor who thinks everything in life should be neat and tidy, even kids and bunnies. The mayor, Orson Oliphant, has pretty much banned every animal except for quiet, neat animals. There is one place, however, where animals run free. Can Emmaline find it, and if she does, will she ever come back to Neatasapin?

Is it any good?


Author Katherine Hannigan has put together a wonderful, sweet, and engaging story in EMMALINE AND THE BUNNY. The fun wordplay makes this a natural read-aloud, and kids will be captivated by the beautiful watercolor pictures. Emmaline is a decent heroine, but she is almost upstaged by the quirky town of Neatasapin and its uptight mayor, Orson Oliphant. The lengths Orson goes through to keep the town and its inhabitants neat are truly giggle-worthy. From banishing animals to putting alarms on baby's diapers, no rule is too ridiculous for Orson.

Emmaline's quiet suffering to earn her bunny and her gentle determination to create a place for him in Neatasapin will tug at kids' heartstrings. Every child can identify with wanting something so badly -- a pet, a bicycle, etc. -- that he or she is willing to work as hard as possible to earn it. Audiences young and old will be cheering for Emmaline and the bunny's reunion.


Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the story's lesson. How did Emmaline earn her bunny? What does the story say about animals and people living together?

Book details

Author:Katherine Hannigan
Book type:Fiction
Publisher:HarperCollins Children's Books
Publication date:February 24, 2009
Number of pages:112
Publisher's recommended age(s):9 - 12

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Parent of a 3 and 5 year old Written byMamaRo June 11, 2012

Quirky, delightful, positive messages - a future classic!

This is a delightful book with full color pictures and valuable perspective on what's really important in life. It's the tale of a girl who must express herself and whose enthusiasm for life, love, and happiness just cannot be contained. There are threads of environmental consciousness, nurturing the self and others, individual expression, and advocacy for the kind of world we want to live in. The quirky language is charming and playful. If this book had been written when I was young, I feel like it would have settled itself into my heart as a child and that I would have read it over and over, getting more out of it as I grew older and understood more about the world and the story's interpretation of it.
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