April 20, 2018

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Two White Rabbits by Jairo Buitrago | SLJ Review

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White RabbitsBuitrago, Jairo. Two White Rabbits. tr. from Spanish by Elisa Amado. illus. by Rafael Yockteng. 32p. ebook available. Groundwood. Oct. 2015. Tr $18.95. ISBN 9781554987412.

K-Gr 3–A young girl and her father face challenges together as they move from place to place. They travel by foot and by train and are happy to catch a ride with passersby when they can. Sometimes their journey is delayed (or derailed) when they must stop because of soldiers or if father has to earn more money to continue along their way. Told entirely through the sensibility of the child, the narration informs readers that “the people who are taking us don’t always take us where we are going.” The young girl passes the time by counting the interesting items she sees such as animals, people, clouds, and stars. She is very curious about where they are headed, but never receives an answer to her query. Yet, she is content because she has her daddy and her two white rabbits. This simple, yet poignant picture book beautifully illustrates the life of one migrating family. Set in Central America or Mexico, it shows the arduous journey north to the United States in search of a better life. This book is a great tool for introducing immigration, and can be appreciated on many levels. The digitally created illustrations are detailed and full of expression, telling a story of love, struggle, and determination. VERDICT An important and timely picture book for every library collection.–Amy Shepherd, St. Anne’s Episcopal School, Middleton, DE

This review was published in School Library Journal‘s July 2015 issue.

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