Oh my gosh. It rhymes and shows bunny children with only half their clothes on sometimes. Despite such notorious picture book no-no’s, I think you’ll quickly bond with this furry rodent family and their quaint fixer-upper on the river’s edge.

Children’s novelist Julie Lake (Galveston: Summer of the Storm, Texas Christian University Press) and I take a ‘picture walk’ through the illustrations of Nancy Hayashi for Cynthia Rylant’s classic bedtime tale Bunny Bungalow (Harcourt Brace & Company. 1999)

In an interview with one of her authors, Diane Adams, Ms. Hayashi said she broke into the business after submitting one of her own picture book dummies to Harcourt Brace. The publisher declined that one but hired her to create the art for Rylant’s Bunny Bungalow.

“The five playful bunny children add a mischievous touch to Hayashi’s (Cosmic Cousin) delightful, nostalgic illustrations; their liveliness–including making horns behind a sibling’s head while posing for a family portrait and perching on an upside-down flowerpot to hear a story better–makes the world of wash basins, grandfather clocks, iron stoves and a mother in long dress and apron seem real,” reported Publishers Weekly in its review of the book.

Hayashi, who is represented by Christina Tugeau is the author as well as illustrator of Cosmic Cousins (Red Fox Read Alone.) She’s also illustrated Raymond and Nelda (Hardcover) by Barbara Bottner  (Peachtree Publishers),  Wanda’s Monster by Eileen Spinelli (Albert Whitman & Company) and several other books by major publishers.

Full Disclosure: Julie and I married about 18 months ago and moved into our home, which aspires to bungalow style about 10 months ago and wild bunnies do hop about our neighborhood. We hope they never leave!

Julie and I wish you a Happy Easter!

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Author Julie Lake reads Bunny Bungalow in her bungalow kitchen.