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The Other Rabbit took me by surprise! I came across this book in the “new” section of our library, and I was immediately drawn to its bright white background and unique illustrations. My instincts were spot-on, too. This book had more pleasant surprises inside.
Have you ever played memory matching? I bet you have. In this game, you shuffle a bunch of cards, lay them face down, and turn over any two. If they match, you keep them. If you don’t, you turn them back over and keep trying. The objective of the game is to find the “other” of each card.
This game is the basis for The Other Rabbit, and — WOW! — it works. The book begins with Rabbit, who is looking for his match. Instead, he finds an airplane, and off he flies. Rabbit pilots the airplane to an island, where he finds another airplane...and so it goes. He encounters a king (and then another), crashes a car into a chicken, and meets new creatures along his way.
One by one, Rabbit’s new friends meet their matches, but he must continue looking. Eventually, he finds a dragon, and—in helping the dragon reunite with its match—he finally reaches the other rabbit and completes the final pair.
The Other Rabbit is written and illustrated by a real-life couple: Maranke Rinck and Martijn van der Linden, who are Dutch. This pair have published a number of books, including Hush Little Turtle, I Feel a Foot!, and The Sweetest Kiss. Since reading The Other Rabbit, I can’t wait to check out all of their books.
My children were delighted by The Other Rabbit, too. They enjoyed the story, which emphasizes friendship and togetherness, and pored over the illustrations looking for all of the pairs. It has also inspired some interest in games of memory and concentration, which I absolutely love as a mom and a teacher. Memory games are known to help young brains focus, grow working and short-term memory, and improve visual processing skills.
I purchased this alphabet matching game for my home, but there are tons of free memory games to print. Here are a few of my favorites.