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While We Were Out (Bccb Blue Ribbon Picture Book Awards) (Bccb Blue Ribbon Picture Book Awards (Awards)) Hardcover – March 1, 2003


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 3 and up
  • Series: Bccb Blue Ribbon Picture Book Awards (Awards)
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Kane/Miller Book Pub (March 1, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1929132441
  • ISBN-13: 978-1929132447
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 7.8 x 10.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #392,500 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

PreSchool-Grade 1-While a family is visiting Grandma, their pet rabbit finds her way into the apartment through an unlocked terrace door. Left to explore, she enjoys all the comforts of human life, including a well-stocked fridge, popcorn and a video, dressing up, a good book, toys to play with, and finally a snooze in a warm bed. The uninvited guest wakes in time to retreat to the terrace, closing the door, innocently hoping her little visit will remain undetected-but what about the unmistakable evidence she has "dropped" behind? Lee has written a sweet, endearing story with just the right ending that will leave little listeners giggling. Illustrations in soft, washed-out grays alternate with others in full color. A mildly adventurous allegory with a bit of funny realism in the end.
Rita Soltan, formerly at Baldwin Public Library, Birmingham, MI
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist

*Starred Review* PreS-Gr. 1. A white rabbit who lives on the patio notices that his family has gone to Grandma's, leaving the house empty. Now the house is hers. Simple line-and-wash pictures alternating with radiant full-page paintings follow the rabbit as she indulges in a multitude of obviously long-held wishes. She eats at the table and watches a movie on TV. She even tries to read a book (without much success). There are two particularly wonderful pictures--one in black and white, the other in color--in which the rabbit first delicately applies lipstick and then puts on a costume of traditional Korean dress belonging to the daughter. But the piece de resistance is a double-page spread showing what the rabbit does with the chopsticks and roller skates she has commandeered--she races through the house, tucked in the skate, pushing herself with the sticks. By the time the family returns, the rabbit is back on the patio. There's no sign of her visit--or is there? Sharp-eyed children will spot pellets of rabbit waste that occasionally turn up in the pictures and appear at the book's conclusion. This Korean import is amusing, yes, but there is also a delicacy and intelligence that pervades the tale. A definite cut above. Ilene Cooper
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
5 star
58%
4 star
42%
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See all 12 customer reviews
A must have for kids and animal loving adults.
Carolyn E. Wallen
Very cute- just the right amount of text, a great cuddle up and giggle story.
Jools1900
It's a very sweet and gentle story with beautiful illustrations.
K. Oster

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By E. R. Bird HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on January 30, 2004
Format: Hardcover
The sweetest little South Korean import on the market today. Admittedly, I'm not particularly familiar with a lot of translated South Korean books for children sold in America. But due to the fact that, "While We Were Out", (originally titled in South Korea, "What On Earth Happened During That Time") is twice as adorable as 95% of picture books written in the English language, it's probably a fair guess.
In this simple book, the family rabbit goes exploring in her owners' house while they're away visiting grandma. The family itself is never seen. Instead, we follow the rabbit as she traipses from room to room, exploring and testing. The rabbit applies lipstick to her face. She settles in for a good movie. She rollerblades (with the help of some strong chopsticks, of course). All the while the little rabbit is determining her own taste and in the end she fully believes she's gotten away without the family ever knowing. There's a cute (and very realistically rabbit-like) twist on the ending of this tale. Anyone who's ever had a fluffy bunny as a pet will instantly understand that this is EXACTLY how their own rabbit might explore the home. "While We Were Out" will not change anyone's life or bowl you over with its style. It is a sweet simple tale told with humor and beauty. Just the perfect book for any time of day.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By MyParenTime.com VINE VOICE on May 27, 2003
Format: Hardcover
Children's books about animals are one of my favorites to review -- especially when the main character has a mind of his own :).
The book, "While You Were Out," by Ho Baek Lee, is about a little rabbit whose owners forget to lock the door to the balcony. When the little rabbit discovers this, she goes exploring throughout the house. While inside, she finds a lot of fun things to do.
MyParenTime.com highly recommends this book -- it's short sentences and simple renderings make this story very enjoyable for young children. The ending is sure to leave a trail...pun intended :).
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Jools1900 on April 15, 2003
Format: Hardcover
This book is just right for my five-year-old bunny loving daughter. It's a simple story of what the pet bunny does when the family leaves, and he sneaks into the house. It's a little reminiscent of Alexandra Day's Carl books, in that when the pet is left alone, he takes on some human characteristics. For instance, this bunny has lunch at the table and tries out roller skating. Very cute- just the right amount of text, a great cuddle up and giggle story.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Jared Castle TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on March 19, 2009
Format: Hardcover
An adventurous bunny slips into the house while the family is away at Grandma's house. The book details the bunny's exploration and hijinks and provides a funny surprise ending that led my sons (ages 6 and 4) to ask me to read it again immediately.

The picture book claims to be based on a true story (and even includes a picture of the actual bunny that inspired this book). I'm sure it was true that a bunny managed to sneak into Ho Baek Lee's house but I'm just as sure the bunny didn't manage to ski down the hallway with a pair of chopsticks and a rollerblade. The artwork reflects the blending of the true and the imaginary. The result is a sweet, fun picture book that my sons have enjoyed over and over again at bedtime.

In summary, this is an enjoyable tale with an endearing character. I recommend it to parents with young children, especially if they have a child who like bunny rabbits. While not a classic, this story is much better than most picture books I've reviewed for Amazon (and please check out my Amazon lists of bedtime books for young boys).

Rating: four stars.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By www.firrkids.com on January 14, 2009
Format: Hardcover
This is a wonderfully imaginative story about a pet rabbit who takes advantage of her family's absence. After they leave one afternoon, she slips inside to explore the apartment and experience the things she has longed to try.

The illustrations are absolutely hilarious - the rabbit enjoying a treat on the couch, applying lipstick, reading books and playing with toys. The activities are just so un-bunny-like and ridiculous that you can't help but laugh. She leans back on the couch, sitting just like a human would, with a bag of chips wedged between her paws.

Right before the family returns, the bunny slips back into her place, hoping to keep her visit a secret. But will she remain undetected? It seems as if she has inadvertently left behind a trail of evidence.

The very best part of this book is how it get the readers engaged in imagining the wild things that might happen in their own homes. Does the dog browse the cupboards and eat the best snacks? Does the hamster build block towers and conduct toy car races on the wood floors? The possibilities are endless ....
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By J. kingman on March 28, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
i agree this is a lovely and sweet children's book. the drawings are soft, subtle, and cozy. the story is delightful and i would give it 5 stars but the text is generic.

the main character - the bunny - IMHO should have had been given a name. at mid-point i became mildly disappointed with the repeated references as "the rabbit" and "she" this and "she" that. i understand children love repetition as a rule, but from a all-around point of view, the repetition feels poorly done perhaps as a result of a translation of the original text (?i'm guessing) rather than as a fun delivery of linguistic repetition. perhaps its just a pet peeve of mine and nobody else would mind it. the book is based on the author's pet bunny named "palpary", and i wished they had named the bunny in the book as well.

a very cute and funny story, and i certainly still recommended it. its fun watching for the 'evidence' throughout the book, and as i mentioned before, the drawings are adorable.
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