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“Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.”
Summary: Zoe couldn't believe it. She was going to star in her class play, Cinder Rabbit! But then Mrs. Lopp (her teacher) had to ruin it: she will lead the cast in the bunny hop at the end. Try as she might, Zoe is a bunny that can't hop. The play is just four days away! Can she hop to it? In this bunn-i-fied version of Cinderella, kids learn that sometimes we need a cast of friends to help us.
Type of Reading: bedtime story, anytime reading, family reading, independent reading, early reader, read aloud book, remedial reader, reluctant reader
Recommended Age: read together: 5 to 10; read yourself: 8 to 10
Interest Level: 5 to 10
Reading Level: 3.6
Age of Child: Started reading with nearly 7-year-old girl.
Young Reader Reaction: "Hoppily ever after? That's funny." Our princess-crazed daughter enjoyed sharing this book (she read some, too). It didn't take too much reading for her to take on the parts of Frida (the fairy god-rabbit) and Winifred (the mean step-rabbit).
Adult Reader Reaction: It's so nice to read an early reader that doesn't SOUND like an early reader. The author offers a great plot, plenty of rabbit humor, and a cute twist (hint: it has to do with the shoes).
Pros: Young readers will enjoy this story based on a familiar fairy tale. This version is clever and the illustrations are terrific.
Borrow or Buy: Buy! You'll enjoy sharing this with your child before they are reading independently, and they will still like it when they can read it themselves.
Educational Themes: This is a great story for early elementary readers: plenty of vocabulary repetition, and chapters so reluctant readers can read it in portions. There is just enough context about staging a play to encourage kids to transform their own favorite story into a performance. The author does a great job transitioning the famous glass slippers into a "prop," both literally and figuratively. Perfect for talking about "lucky" rabbit's feet and the like.
Notes: The author donated a copy of this book knowing that we would consider it for review and provide an independent, unbiased profile. This book will be given to a nonprofit to help readers in need.