Jump On Over! The Adventures of Brer Rabbit and His Family
Harris, Joel Chandler
Parks, Van Dyke
. Voyager Books: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich . San Diego
PZ8.1.P2255 Jump 1989 (Carlson Fable Collection, BIC bldg)
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As in Jump! three years earlier, forty large-format pages present five story complexes involving Brer Rabbit's neighbors, Brer Bear, Brer Wolf, Brer Fox, and Brer Fox again. The volume closes with the song Home. Brer Rabbit's first caper here is to scare this usual trio of enemies as they lie in wait for him and the good things he has bought for the family in town. The second caper has him hanging in a noose of a trap over Brer Fox's field of goober peas, boiled peanuts, which he has been looting. He convinces Brer Bear that he is earning a dollar an hour guarding the field, and thus gets Brer Bear into the noose, where Brer Fox attacks him as the supposed culprit. In a third episode, Brer Wolf and Brer Fox have teamed up to eat Miss Molly, Brer Rabbit's wife, and his children. Brer Rabbit is able to convince Brer Wolf that some molasses he has is fox blood, and immediately Brer Wolf pursues Brer Fox instead of working with him to eat up the rabbit family. In a fourth story, the rabbit children stall Brer Fox long enough for Brer Rabbit to come home. In the last story, Brer Fox and Brer Rabbit agree, in a time of starvation and drought, to drive their families into town to be sold. But along the way, Brer Rabbit's wife and children jump one by one out of the cart, only to have Brer Rabbit claim that the foxes in the cart have eaten them. Brer Fox, disappointed not to be able to eat the little rabs, sells his wife and children for some cornmeal. To finish off that story, Brer Rabbit gets Brer Fox to try pulling his horses out of quicksand. The horse tails he pulls on have been cut off and planted by Brer Rabbit, who laughs his way out of the story and the book. Each story cycle has three or four full-page illustrations, including both colored and black-and-white. While the various colored depictions of Brer Fox and Brer Wolf are excellent, I like best the black-and-white illustration of the little rabbits practicing the title's command Jump! (20).