Li’l Rabbit’s Kwanzaa
Donna L. Washington
Illustrated by Shane W. Evans
Katherine Tegen Books, Harper Collins Publishers, 2010
From the dust jacket: “Li’l Rabbit is not having a very good Kwanzaa. Granna Rabbit is sick, and so his family won’t celebrate his favorite part of Kwanzaa this year: the big feast called Karamu. Li’l Rabbit knows what to do! He’ll find Granna Rabbit a special treat for Karamu so she can celebrate anyway. He looks under a pile of logs, in the field, and in the pond and along the way meets Groundhog, Momma Field Mouse, and the frogs—but he doesn’t find anything for Granna Rabbit. Maybe I’m just too little to help Granna Rabbit celebrate Kwanzaa, Li’l Rabbit thinks. Or maybe he just needs a little help from his family and friends. Inspired by Brer Rabbit, a trickster character from the African-American folklore tradition, the story of Li’l Rabbit captures the true meaning of Kwanzaa—coming together to help others.”
Poor Li’l Rabbit – he’s so small and wants to help so bad! This is a very sweet book that tells the story of Kwanzaa in a different way. Rather than tell about the holiday straightforward – like the teaching fables of Brer Rabbit and his folk – the story is told in a roundabout way so that you have to think about how it represents Kwanzaa. There is sort of a cheat sheet in the back of the book for folks like me. This is a good book for families to read together and then chat about afterward. The text is a medium size, but because it is printed in white or black, on both light and dark backgrounds, it would harder for the early reader. But, it is a fun read aloud book and will help even the smallest of celebrants feel included in the holiday!