English / USA

Battle Bunny

Scieszka, Jon / Barnett, Mac (text)
Myers, Matthew (illus.)
New York [et al.]: Simon & Schuster Books
for Young Readers, 2013. – [32] p.
ISBN 978-1-4424-4673-1

Birthday | Super powers | Villain | Creativity | Imagination | Metafiction

Birthday Bunny – so the ≫original≪ title – is a sweet little picture book that young Alex receives from his grandmother. The boy is obviously enraged about such a boring, babyish present and quickly grabs a black pencil to improve the story. With a few additions to the illustrations and some changes to the text, cute little Birthday Bunny is turned into powerful Battle Bunny who hatches an evil plan and cannot be stopped by his enemies – until Alex himself steps in and saves the world.

In this highly metafictional, complex work, popular authors Jon Scieszka and Mac Barnett have teamed up with illustrator Matthew Myers (and fictional Alex, of course). The harmless, syrupy tale about a rabbit who feels neglected by his friends morphs into an action-filled battle-heavy superhero adventure. Together they create a two-layered story – with both levels visible at the same time – that invites little readers to let their own creativity loose and resume power over their story. (Age: 6+)