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Mr. and Mrs. Bunny--Detectives Extraordinaire! Paperback – February 11, 2014


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 3 - 7
  • Lexile Measure: 730L (What's this?)
  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Yearling; Reprint edition (February 11, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0375865306
  • ISBN-13: 978-0375865305
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.9 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #498,603 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 3-5-When Madeline, a fifth grader, comes home to discover that her somewhat unconventional, hippie parents are missing, so begins another fantastic and entertainingly quirky chapter book (Schwartz + Wade, 2012) by Polly Horvath. Madeline, who lives on Hornby Island, has had to learn to be the grown-up in her family; taking care of her parents, who have chosen to live a carefree, isolated life. Much to her parents' bewilderment, Madeline insists on taking two ferries and two buses so that she can attend the public school on the mainland. This creatively humorous and sometimes satirical tale involves a host of curious characters including a pair of detective bunnies who come to Madeline's assistance when her parents are kidnapped by a group of nefarious foxes and their somewhat pretentious leader, the Grand Poobah. Cleverly credited as being written by Mrs. Bunny herself, with merely a translation by Polly Horvath, kids will love the cast of captivating characters in this laugh-out-loud adventure. The author provides admirable narration, but her slight vocal distinctions between the characters make the recording seem slow moving. However, the story itself is so dynamic and entertaining that listeners will be engaged and eager for more!-Amy Joslyn, Fairport Public Library, Fairport NYα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

Review

Starred Review, Booklist, February 15, 2012:
“An instant classic, with a contemporary resonance and a tone of yesteryear, fairly begging to be read aloud.”

Starred Review, The Horn Book Magazine, January 1, 2012:
“Look not for logic; this is a romp.”

Starred Review, Publishers Weekly, December 12, 2011:
“Energetic pacing, witty prose, and snappy dialogue coalesce in what is hopefully the first of many escapades for these unforgettable, bumbling would-be sleuths.”

Review, The Washington Post, May 2, 2012:
“National Book Award-winner Polly Horvath’s latest, a rabbity romp complete with
whimsical illustrations and a quirky cast of characters, has both the look and feel of a classic children’s book . . . Forget logic, the real fun here is in the detours, dead-ends and dangling clues that destroy all literary conventions.”

Review, The New York Times Book Review, May 13, 2012:
“Quite amusing….[her stories] give younger readers something they can readily grasp and enjoy”




From the Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

A fun AND funny book for adults and children!
Sharon Crane
There are so many books out there that don't feel the need to include this type of word (not sure if this is author or editor fault).
3timesthefun
I have read and enjoyed a couple of Polly Horvath's other books.
Kara Lynn Russell

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By W. Black on June 17, 2012
Format: Hardcover
After reading the 1 star reviews of this book, I have come to a new understanding of the deliberate ignorance of some people.

The outrages over what the character Flo about "redistribution of wealth", against the monarchy, against grading, etc. were not praises of those values, but character development for the heroine's parents. If they had read on, they would have seen that the "hippies" Flow and Mildred were in fact satirized as out-of-touch, even burn-out types and that it was Madeline, the daughter who went to public school and wanted to be like the other children, who took care of them.

To think that Horvath was trying to "propagandize" from a leftist perspective is about as back-asswards as it gets, but typical of some of the right who have no sense of satire or irony unless it's done with a Limbaugh hammer. In fact, in one particular scene, the "bunny government" is feared by the Bunnies in a manner most libertarian.

Politics aside, the book is quite funny and age-appropriate for eight-nine years old and up. There is an easy transition from our "real world" to the world of the bunnies and foxes (anthropomorphized of course). The jokes are light and airy. The "mystery" is almost irrelevant as it's just a fun romp.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By K Harper on March 4, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
My 9 year old struggles to find books that are sweet without being saccharine, adventurous without being too scary. This book takes the overdone trope of girl who has to rescue her parents and makes it hysterically funny. She started reading it herself, wanted to read me the funniest lines, and before long we were reading it as a family because everyone was enjoying it so much. I do agree with the other reviewers that some of the humor is probably a little too satirical for young readers, and that the plot don't follow the normal rhythms; instead it's lots of diversions and then a wham bang everything at once ending. But we enjoyed it so much; it's a book where the humor comes first and at times seems to be mocking the usual kiddie lit formula.
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Format: Hardcover
I'm pretty astonished to arrive here and find people's knickers in a twist over chapter 1. My goodness, it was clear as day to me, a left-of-center person, that the author was NOT promulgating a left-wing agenda but rather mocking the sort of people who lose sight of the essence of something and bury their head in meaningless, rote, and showy patterns of holier-than-thou behavior--something that people from any religion or political stripe can do.

The first chapter sets the tone for poor Madeline's situation--SHE is the "adult" in the family, not the leftover-from-Haight-Ashbury wanderers who are older than her. We are not supposed to sympathize with these parents who won't go to their child's graduation, not agree with them!

Poor author, can't believe she's been so misunderstood...but then again I'm sure she thought people would have the maturity to read past chapter 1.

Anyway. I loved this book. Laughed a lot. Wished my daughter were young again so I could read it aloud to her. She's a teenager and pretty busy so understandably won't let me do that though she did laugh over the outtakes I read to her.

It's TOTALLY absurd, and very clever. Kids will either get the jokes now, or at least appreciate the absurdity, and then later on the references to things beyond their ken will "click" and they'll laugh anew.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Kathryn E Colbow on March 16, 2012
Format: Hardcover
When a young girl named Madeline's parents are kidnapped by foxes, the foxes give Madeline a recipe to decode. And when two bunnies move into a new hutch, they make friends with Madeline and ask a marmot to help decode the recipe. Will they be able to decode it before something happens to Madeline's parents?

I loved it when Madeline hypnotized the marmot. This book was really funny. We also listened to it on cd and the voices were really funny. We can't wait for the next bunny detectives book!
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Bookmark on March 12, 2012
Format: Hardcover
A bizarre, yet oddly satisfying story for middle readers and up, this book tells the tale of a girl named Madeline whose parents are kidnapped by foxes and who goes in search of them with the help of a pair of bunnies who have recently purchased fedora hats and therefore are obviously detectives.

Horvath writes in a style that is rather like a swirling combination of Lemony Snicket and Beatrix Potter. It is kooky and funny, yet rather sophisticated in the details. Madeline's favorite book is "Pride and Prejudice," for instance, and in a terrific scene, her parents, Mildred and Flo, use a lot of silly French and German phrases while trying to learn to speak fox. Some readers may not have any frame of reference for the stereotypical hippie-speak of Madeline's folks, but it shouldn't keep them from enjoying this quirky little novel.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Lighthouse Keeper on November 30, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I read this with my grandkids and we alternately howled with laughter and tried to straighten out the twists in the storyline. Great read!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Ashley Herrington on August 21, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I bought this book after reading the back of it and I am so glad I did. It was so funny and very enjoyable even as an adult reader. The parts with the Marmot were especially funny. I would buy any book that Polly Horvath writes in the future.
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Kara Lynn Russell VINE VOICE on March 11, 2012
Format: Audio CD
I have read and enjoyed a couple of Polly Horvath's other books. This one was a bit different than The Trolls and Everything on A Waffle so it surprised me, but what a delightful surprise it was.

Mr. and Mrs. Bunny--Detectives Extraorinaire! is, quite frankly, silly. But it is also clever and funny and even a bit sweet.

I listened to the audio edition and it caught my attention right away. It is read by the author. Mrs. Bunny is listed as the author of this book and Polly Horvath merely as the translator, so I'm not sure if it is Horvath or an actress portraying Mrs. Bunny who is doing the reading. Whichever the case, the voice was perfect for the character - prim and squeaky with a bit of a lisp. It made me laugh right away. So the audiobook is delightful but I feel a little sad that I missed the illustrations for this book and am considering getting a paper copy to compare.

The main characters are of course Mr. and Mrs. Bunny, who decide out of the blue one day to become detectives. Actually it is Mrs. Bunny's choice. Mr. Bunny frequently refers to her "short-lived enthusiasms." Becoming a detective seems to be Mrs. Bunny's answer to the empty nest blues that assail her after their 12 children move away.

In their pursuit of a career as detectives the Bunnies meet Madeline whose lackadaisical hippy parents have been kidnapped by foxes. Madeline has always taken care of her parents rather than the other way around and is determined to rescue them. Mr. and Mrs. Bunny, horrified by her parents lack of...well, parenting, agree to help. It turns out that they are not very good detectives but Madeline enjoys being taken care of for a change.
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