Thursday, November 11, 2010

Knuffle Bunny Free by Mo Willems

Trixie and her beloved bunny have traveled down the block, through the park, and past the school to the Laundromat in Knuffle Bunny.  Trixie took her one-of-a-kind bunny to school in Knuffle Bunny Too.  In Knuffle Bunny FreeMo Willems tells how Trixie and her family embark on a much longer journey.  This time they are going to visit Oma and Opa in Holland.

The Knuffle Bunny series has been a family favorite for years.  The adults laugh at the marriage and hospital pictures on the title page and how Trixie helps her daddy with the laundry.  Our kids laugh when Trixie says, "Aggle flaggle klabble!" and "Wumby flappy?!”  They think it's hysterical when Trixie goes boneless.  (Good thing they've grown out of the habit of going boneless themselves.)  The adults laugh at the kids laughing, like when a friend of our daughter’s said, “Why is she washing goggles?”


So everyone was excited when Knuffle Bunny Free was released.

During their journey to Holland, Trixie and Knuffle Bunny experience all the joys of traveling long distances.  There’s the eagerness of the taxi ride to the airport, the uncertainty of airport security, and the excitement of boarding a real airplane.  There’s also the monotonous boredom of waiting in line, waiting at the gate, and waiting for the plane to arrive.  Finally Trixie and her family board a train for Oma and Opa’s house, arriving to welcoming hugs and cold glasses of chocolate milk.  But then...

Trixie's realizations in Knuffle Bunny, Knuffle Bunny Too, and Knuffle Bunny Free.

No, Knuffle Bunny is not in the washing machine.  No, Knuffle Bunny is not at Sonja’s house.  Worse.  Trixie’s daddy called the airline.

Knuffle Bunny is in China.

No way Knuffle Bunny is coming home this time, everyone thinks.  Mommy gives Trixie hugs, Daddy tells the story of his “Special Lamby,” and Oma got more chocolate milk and commented about how big Trixie was getting.  Not even the café, the park, the carnival, windmills, feeding ducks, or Oma and Opa’s surprise can fill the Knuffle Bunny sized hole inside Trixie.

Eventually Trixie comes to a realization on her own about Knuffle Bunny.  And despite the amazing and miraculous final events of the Knuffle Bunny saga, Trixie knows that her realization is true.

“Really?” asks Trixie’s daddy.  “Really?” asks Trixie’s mommy.  “Blaggie Plaggie?” asks a new acquaintance.

“Really.”

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