We first met this little rabbit in No! Said Rabbit, Marjoke Henrichs’ debut picture book, now on the longlist for the 2022 Klaus Flugge Prize. In this new outing, he’s in a much more agreeable mood, excited for a trip to the park with Dad. Getting ready though, as anyone with experience of little children will know, is not the simple task it sounds. First, what to take, then what to wear? A series of different outfits are presented and prompt the same response: “Ready!” said Rabbit. “Not in that!” said Dad. Next there’s the challenge of choosing snacks, the whole process drawn out even more as a new series of distractions waylay Rabbit. Adult readers will notice from the bright red clock on the wall that by now, two hours have passed since Dad first sent Rabbit to get ready. In fact, it’ll be a lot longer before the two finally step outside, under the attentive eye of the black and white cat who has been watching it all, a call from Grandma and the matter of Dad’s lost keys holding them up again.
Henrichs again perfectly depicts the joyful chaos and confusion that make up so much of a toddler’s life, alongside the delight they find in the simplest of things, and her representation of the adult-child relationship is also beautifully observed and tender. Adults will laugh at the truth of it all, including the lost keys, while clever use of repetitive language and the bright, scribbly illustrations full of familiar objects, make this another perfect book for the very young.