Knuffle Bunny Free: An Unexpected Diversion
This is the third book in the Knuffle Bunny Picture Book Series. The series is based on a little girl, Trixie, and her security bunny. The series begins when Trixie is just learning how to speak her first words. It moves through preschool as she learns to make friendships. And it ends up in this book. The Knuffle Bunny book that made me CRY in Barnes and Noble.
In this story, Trixie has become a "big girl". She travels to Holland to visit Oma and Opa, her grandparents. Knuffle Bunny gets left on the plane and takes and unexpected diversion around the world. Trixie's family begins to convince her that she is now a big girl and is ready to give up her Knuffle Bunny.
** Spoiler Alert**
Through a bit of struggle, Trixie comes to terms with this new phase of her life... only to reunite with her Knuffle Bunny on her way home. However, on that same plane ride, Trixie decides to pass along Knuffle Bunny to a crying baby, showing that she is, indeed, now a big girl. Here is the part that made me tear up: Trixie's dad writes her a letter sharing his hope that maybe someone will pass Knuffle Bunny on to Trixie's child when she is grown.
I loved this ending to the series. Although it is bittersweet, I think when my child has the emotional maturity for it, it will be a great way to deal with growing up and letting go. Right now, however, I think Logan (2 1/2 years) is more in the stage of the second Knuffle Bunny book- where Trixie learns about dealing with peer relationships. By the way, Logan asks for his, "Knuffle Book" every night now. Tyson (almost 1) is almost ready for the first book!!
Mo Williems creates beautiful artwork in this book that is unlike ANYTHING I have ever seen in children's literature. He pairs black and white photographs with cartoon character drawings. And somehow, that works wonders for adults and kids! Williems, who has already won a Caldecott honor, should definitely be in the running for some ALA awards this year!
Do you have a favorite Knuffle Bunny book?