In honour of the Chinese year, the year of the rabbit, my list of my favourite rabbits in fiction are as follows:
1. Velveteen Rabbit The Velveteen Rabbit Margery Williams
2. Br’er Rabbit from The Uncle Remus Stories Joel Chandler Harris
3. Peter Rabbit The Tales of Beatrix Potter
4. Hazel and co. of Watership Down Richard Adams
5. The White Rabbit Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland Lewis Carroll
Special mention to Rabbit of Winnie The Pooh fame.
To me, rabbits have always had a certain pluck and are far from the insipid little beasties they always seem to be portrayed as. That might just be as a result of my pet rabbits having bullied me through the years, but I’ve chosen my rabbits to reflect this, with the White Rabbit thrown in for a bit of variety.
I will never forget hearing the story of The Velveteen Rabbit when I was about four years old and how sad that made me. If you haven’t read it yet, then you really, really must. If you’re in the mood to weep over rabbits (well, you never know) one that has the potential to get me going is a poem by Roger McGough Rabbit in a Mixer Survives based on the true story of a little rabbit who fell into a cement mixer.