The Easter Egg by Jan Brett

The Easter Egg by Jan Brett
G.P. Putnam's Sons, A Division of Penguin Young Readers Group

Summary of The Easter Egg by Jan Brett

The Easter Egg by Jan Brett is a Easter picture book that will delight young children, ages 3 to 6. In the story and the illustrations of The Easter Egg, Jan Brett stresses the importance of friendship, kindness and sharing, even when competing for the same prize. While all the bunnies work hard to produce the best Easter egg so they will win the opportunity to help the Easter Rabbit, they are kind and helpful to one another as the young bunny Hoppi finds out when he competes for the first time.

Pros

  • Jan Brett's artwork is a delight.
  • The theme of kindness and sharing is illustrated in both words and pictures.
  • The artwork in the borders that frame each double-page spread extend the story.

Cons

  • While the artwork will appeal to all ages, the story is for young children.

Description

  • Author: Jan Brett, whose numerous children's books include The Three Snow Bears and Home for Christmas plus a version of Goldilocks I describe in my article Traditional Tales of Goldilocks and the Three Bears.
  • Format: Picture Book
  • Recommended for: Children ages 3 to 6
  • Publisher: G.P. Putnam's Sons, A Division of Penguin Young Readers Group, The Penguin Group
  • Publication Date: 2010
  • ISBN: 9780399252389

The Easter Egg by Jan Brett

Jan Brett's picture books are known for their artwork, and The Easter Egg is no exception. A little bunny named Hoppi is very excited to finally be old enough to participate in the Easter egg competition.

Hoppi is determined to create the winning Easter egg because the winner gets "to help the Easter Rabbit hide the eggs on Easter morning."

As he wanders through the grass and trees, Hoppi sees bunnies working on spectacular eggs. In both the double-page spreads and the borders that frame them, Jan Brett depicts appealing bunnies in jackets, aprons and other clothing working on their Easter eggs.

These include pastel Easter eggs used as planters for wildflowers, a carved wooden egg, a chocolate egg, colorfully detailed Easter eggs, an Easter egg with a lifelike portrait of the Easter Rabbit on it, a mechanical egg and more. Each bunny that Hoppi visits with treats him kindly and shares egg-making supplies with him.

Overwhelmed by all he has seen, Hoppi hops into the woods to think. Realizing that creating the best egg is harder than he thought, Hoppi decides, "I guess I don't have to win. I just want to make an egg I am proud of." Even that goal slips his mind when he hears Mother Robin squawking and realizes one of her eggs has fallen out of the nest.

Hoppi comes to the rescue, sitting on the egg to keep it warm while Mother Robin cares for the two eggs still in her nest. While caring for the egg day and night, Hoppi endures rain and cold and scary sounds. Finally, the egg hatches.

Meanwhile, the other rabbits complete their eggs and on Easter morning, are there to greet the Easter Rabbit who arrives in a beautifully decorated wagon. The scene of the flowered and Easter egg draped wagon pulled by a team of hens is illustrated on a triple-page spread, with the extra page unfolding to give a panoramic view of the wagon, the Easter Rabbit, and the bunnies there to greet him.

Despite the fact that Hoppi has not decorated an egg, the Easter Rabbit is aware of what he has done. Virtue is rewarded when the Easter Rabbit declares Hoppi the winner, and all of the other rabbits cheer for him. It's nice to find a book about a group competing for a prize who help one another rather than being so eager to win that they treat one another badly in their quest to win. I recommend The Easter Egg for children ages 3 to 6, but older children and adults will also appreciate the engaging illustrations.

For more recommended children's Easter books, see my articles Best Easter Picture Books for Children and Board Books About Easter for Young Children.