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Mr. and Mrs. Bunny—Detectives Extraordinaire! (The Bunny's #1)

3.75  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,584 Ratings  ·  410 Reviews
"National Book Award-winner Polly Horvath's latest, a rabbity romp complete with whimsical illustrations and a quirky cast of characters, has both the look and feel of a classic children's book," raves The Washington Post.

In this hilarious chapter book mystery, meet a girl whose parents have been kidnapped by disreputable foxes, and a pair of detectives that also happen to
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published February 14th 2012 by Schwartz & Wade, Random House Children's Books (first published February 2012)
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Wonder by R.J. PalacioThe One and Only Ivan by Katherine ApplegateThe Fault in Our Stars by John GreenLiar & Spy by Rebecca SteadThe Lions of Little Rock by Kristin Levine
Newbery 2013
65th out of 113 books — 1,215 voters
Watership Down by Richard AdamsThe Velveteen Rabbit by Margery WilliamsThe Tale of Peter Rabbit by Beatrix PotterAlice's Adventures in Wonderland & Through the Looking-Glass by Lewis CarrollBunnicula by James Howe
131st out of 131 books — 51 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,801)
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Rachael Stein
Mar 27, 2012 Rachael Stein rated it it was amazing
Ursula K. Le Guin recently wrote an excellent post about literary awards. The whole thing is thoughtful and thought-provoking, but this passage in particular caught my eye:

"I wish we gave literary prizes freely, the way they used to give prizes at the Pet Show at Codornices Park in Berkeley when I was a kid. Every kid in the neighborhood brought their pet, and every pet got a prize, an ad hoc, unique prize: for Soulfulness — for Loud Meowing — for Unusual Spot Placement — for Being the Only Skin
Lu Benke
Apr 26, 2013 Lu Benke rated it really liked it
Think farce. Think Marshall's The Stupids. Think a book that blows you out of the water for how silly and fun and full of the fun of language a book can be. I KNOW a lot of my colleagues will say this book is just too much, but I loved it! I listened to this as an audiobook but I think I would have enjoyed the book even more. The girl Madeline has parents who are the stereotype of Hippy/Dead Head parents. I laughed the entire time that they were introduced. I kept wondering what age kids would e ...more
Sep 14, 2012 Rachel rated it liked it
I picked this one up for a couple of reasons. I enjoyed Everything on a Waffle and My One Hundred Adventures by the same author. Also, the cover drew me in with its ridiculous title, its equally ridiculous illustration of two oh-so-serious detective rabbits, and its claim that the book was translated from the rabbit by Polly Horvath.

And even though I laughed through the whole thing, I don’t think kids are going to find it nearly as funny as I did. The kids who pick up a bunny chapter book are no
Gail Shepherd
Aug 29, 2011 Gail Shepherd rated it it was amazing
The bulk of my reading is middle grade, YA, and adult, but getting the galleys for Polly Horvath's Mr. and Mrs Bunny--Detectives Extraordinaire! made my week, and I'm not even exaggerating. I haven't howled through a book this way since David Sedaris's Naked. And to think it was a chapter book that left me gasping! Mr. and Mrs. Bunny is targeting two completely different demographics, I suspect: seven- to ten-year-olds, and the adults reading to them. The book is due out February 2012, but you c ...more
Mark Flowers
Sep 10, 2012 Mark Flowers rated it it was amazing
It's a shame this isn't eligible for the Newbery award since it is a translation from the original Rabbit, but what a translation! Horvath has done an amazing job of rending Mrs. Bunny's prose into elegant, first-rate English. A triumph.
Feb 17, 2015 Luann rated it liked it
This was fun and silly, although I went back and forth with how much I liked it while I was reading it. I sometimes got tired of the silliness and wanted it to end sooner, but I always wanted to finish and find out what happened. I mostly liked Mr. and Mrs. Bunny and Madeline, but not too many of the other characters. There were several quotes that I really liked, some of which made me laugh out loud.

I find now that I've finished that I would be willing to read another Mr. and Mrs. Bunny book so
Jim Erekson
May 13, 2013 Jim Erekson rated it really liked it
Thanks for the tip, Lu! We enjoyed listening to this in the car, and filling in at home with the book in between.

The tongue-in-cheek tone reminded me of the Alexander McCall Smith mysteries, like the Prof. Dr. von Igelfeld books. So many laughing moments in this book--Pearl couldn't help herself and acted out several times during the week the moment when for dramatic effect in the courtoom, Mr. Bunny paused so long that "several councilbunnies went out for coffee. One had time to order a short
At the library where I work, we have a section for new books (print books and audiobooks), and I am always perusing it on my out. To be honest, I pulled this book because of the cover! lol I'm also fond of mysteries.

One thing I can't stand about modern TV sitcoms is that parents, usually the dad, are portrayed as idiots. In this story, the parents are idiots, but in a way that should make some kids appreciate their own parents a bit more. In this story, Madeline is a girl who lives on a tiny Ca
Mar 18, 2012 Jessica rated it it was ok
I had really high expectations for Mr. and Mrs. Bunny—Detectives Extraordinaire!, because it sounded so cute and charming, and plus, it was about bunnies, which are my favorite animals ever! When I started reading it, I really liked it, especially the human character, Madeline. However, the silly and cutesy parts of the story really started to wear on me. I'd say it ventures on parody, with bunny versions of Jane Austen and The Old Spaghetti Factory. After a while you start to wonder how many na ...more
Susan P
Dec 31, 2012 Susan P rated it liked it
I picked this up b/c it's been on a lot of potential Newbery lists. It's cute, but I didn't love it. Typical quirky Horvath (which is good) with lots of unusual characters, but I wish I'd read this and not listened to it. The author narrates her own book, and I didn't like her narration. Plus the book has some cute illustrations that I'm sorry I missed. In a nutshell, Madeline comes home from school one day to find that her hippie parents have been kidnapped by foxes. She sets out to try to find ...more
Isabelle Clara
Feb 23, 2015 Isabelle Clara rated it it was amazing
very exciting and funny!
Jennifer Rasmussen
I like this book because it had detectives that were bunnies and other funny things, like foxes that could drive and a girl who talked bunny. My favorite scene was when the girl named Madeline met Prince Charles, and he commented on her shoes made of used dental floss! I learned always to be loyal to your parents. Madeline's parents were kidnapped mad she was loyal to them even though they were not there. She persevered to find them. They were hippies who didn't know how to do anything!
Review b
Rebecca Honeycutt
SHEER CHUZTPAH. That's what it takes for an author to perform an entire audiobook IN THE VOICE OF A BUNNY. While I can see how the squeaky, lispy narration could irritate some listeners, it made me smile uncontrollably. Four for you, Polly Horvath (and audiobook producers).

I really enjoyed the cutesy-animal-fantasy-meets-postmodern-snark tone of the story, though I did wonder how much of the humor would really resonate with kids. This one will probably be best enjoyed by readers who are well-ve
This is a wacky book. I enjoyed it and thought it was funny. It actually reminded me a bit of "Alice in Wonderland" - a resolute, no-nonsense heroine, talking rabbits in hats, silly bickering amongst the characters and a kind of crazy silly sense of humor. But I just kept thinking that your average 10-year-old, the audience for whom this book was presumably written, would not get it. Perhaps they will enjoy it on a different level - I hope so - but I don't think most kids these days even necessa ...more
Sharon Tyler
Feb 16, 2012 Sharon Tyler rated it really liked it
Mr. and Mrs. Bunny-Detectives Extraordinaire! by Polly Horvath is a children's chapter book with much more to it than I expected from the cover. There are two story lines in the beginning, that intersect and continue in unexpected ways. Madeline is a responsible young girl being raised by two free spirited parents, in an equally free spirited town. One night Madeline comes home from work to discover her parents have been kidnapped. Mr. and Mrs. Bunny are moving to a new home, that has been vacat ...more
Mar 29, 2012 nicole rated it liked it
Shelves: 7up, 2012, canadian
Entertaining, but a real oddball of a book. The writing is casual and feels a bit slapped together. Not Horvath's best work (or Blackall's for that matter) by any stretch, and the humor seems over the intended audience's head. Certainly kids will laugh at the dim witted marmot and Flo's tendency to end sentences with "man", but quips about the monarchy? Marijuana jokes?? Really?? Strange in good AND bad ways. I liked the relationship between Madeline and Mr. & Mrs. Bunny. I liked everything ...more
Nov 05, 2012 Miriam rated it really liked it
Good fun. I just loved Everything on a Waffle so I was fairly sure that Mr and Mrs Bunny would be a good read, though I wasn't quite sure what to expect given, well, given the bunnies. So yes, there are anthropomorphic bunnies, and foxes, and marmots, but I would still say the book will have greater appeal among fans of clever, slightly prickly, but still sweet at its core, realistic fiction than among fantasy fans. Certainly 10-year-old Madeline's isolated life on a quasi commune with her obtus ...more
Feb 27, 2012 Brenda rated it liked it
Mr. and Mrs. Bunny - Detectives Extraordinaire translated from the Rabbit by Polly Horvath is fun from beginning to end. As in all the Polly Horvath books I have read there is a uniquely functioning dysfunctional family situation. In this case Madeline is more an adult than her parents. She takes care of everything for them, but they don't seem to see the need for her traditional wishes to go to school, have friends or fit in. Of course they get kidnapped and it is up to Madeline to find them. S ...more
Nov 19, 2013 Rachel rated it liked it
Shelves: read-with-kids
This is a weird, weird book. The audience definitely skews a bit older than the title and cover art would lead you to believe. A book about bunny detectives, and such sweet-but-hip/strange illustrations...just right for my 4- and almost-7-year-olds. Except that a character says "Crap" twice in the first chapter, and "Bollocks" in the last chapter, and the humor is is very dry and strange and adult. And the plot is utterly bizarre. It irritated me, but at the same time, it was so absurdist I coul ...more
Naomi Schmidt
Feb 13, 2013 Naomi Schmidt rated it liked it
This was a cute and extremely silly little book. In its own version of the common Disney trope, most of the adults in Madeleine's life are completely useless, especially her hippy parents, whom she has basically been taking care of for as long as she can remember. So, when they get kidnapped, it seems only natural that she should be able to figure out where they are and how to get them back. However, the relative whose assistance she is counting on falls into a sudden (if expected) coma, and the ...more
Oct 13, 2011 Mickey rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
...oh where do I begin?! I started this book with the idea that it would be a quick read...quick review...moving on. Man, was I wrong. I was laughing at the absurdity of meeting the Bunnies for the first time and found myself devouring the book to see what was coming next. It was one of those stories that should have been predictable, but I constantly second-guessed myself because there was a constant feeling that anything could happen next.

Mr and Mrs Bunny would be a great middle-school book us
Jun 11, 2012 Stacy rated it liked it
Madeline's parents have been kidnapped by linguistically-inclined foxes in the process of starting their own rabbit-product factory. Madeline teams up with Mr. and Mrs. Bunny in order to find them. On the way they deal with hat clubs, an uncle in a coma, exploding rubber, a mooching neighbor, and a garlic-guzzling marmot.

I just don't know. The story was cute, and the book was laugh-out-loud funny in some places, but there isn't a good audience for this. The storyline is probably of most interest
Jun 16, 2015 Jenny rated it it was amazing
The resident kid gives this five stars because she loves how the mystery unravels with good hints, plenty of tricks, and a whole lot of extreme silliness. Also marmots.
Sep 28, 2013 Adriel rated it it was ok
The first chapter showed such humorous potential. I loved the hippie parents and the kooky island community. This book lost me at the big butt joke in which Mr. Bunny cannot get over referring to Madeline's humongous bottom. I get that it is supposed to be funny for the 11 year olds reading it, but it feels uncomfortable every time because I am so aware of how easily girls can be negatively affected by this kind of joking. My librarian recommended it and says she has kid's for whom this is their ...more
Rebecca Gomez
Apr 20, 2016 Rebecca Gomez rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is charming and hilarious. I laughed out loud at least a dozen times while reading it. Wonderful book!
Apr 06, 2016 Leia rated it really liked it
Quirky and fun. Going to keep making my way through Polly Horvath's books. She's a gem.
Jan 09, 2013 Erica rated it really liked it
Review for NetGalley from an e-ARC

Mr. and Mrs. Bunny was laugh-out loud funny. Madeline's parents have been kidnapped by the foxes. Her parents are self-absorbed hippies and just plain strange, but she must find them. She enlists the help of Mr. and Mrs. Bunny to help her find her parents.

This book was at times entertainingly ridiculous and Mr. and Mrs. Bunny were a bit over the top but it made me laugh. I can imagine it will make kids laugh. It was a good detective story for the second and thi
Mar 02, 2015 Jennifer rated it really liked it
Shelves: finn-wren
Well-written, funny and just the right amount of bizarre (code breaking marmots, a girl who understands animal language, a bunny wearing disco platforms) to appeal to youngish readers. I really enjoy quirky books such as this one - recommended!

*...But his reading vocabulary was larger than his speaking vocabulary, so that he made the occasional pronunciation mistake.* (Me too!!!)

*"We speak Fox, Marmot, Bird," said Mr. Bunny. "You know, the Romance languages. All bunnies learn those in grade scho
Jul 01, 2014 Terrell rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Apr 28, 2012 Brenda rated it it was ok
Shelves: fantasy
A story with lots of premise but not nearly as funny or cute as I thought it would be. Madeline is a very likeable character and there are rabbits and foxes that can talk, but you have to be able to hear them in order to understand them. There is a kidnapping in which a code needs to be deciphered by a marmot and the rabbits need to put their new fond detective skills to work. Unfortunately the story kinda never really took off for me and was a struggle to finish.
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Polly Horvath is the author of many books for young people, including Everything on a Waffle, The Pepins and Their Problems, The Canning Season and The Trolls. Her numerous awards include the Newbery Honor, the National Book Award for Young People's Literature, the Boston Globe-Horn Book Honor, the Vicky Metcalf Award for Children's Literature, the Mr. Christie Award, the international White Raven ...more
More about Polly Horvath...

Other Books in the Series

The Bunny's (2 books)
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“We read a lot of books. Children's books mostly, because they're always much more truthful than adult books. And much more entertaining," said Mrs. Bunny.” 7 likes
“The richness of our lives depends on what we are willing to notice and what we are willing to believe.” 5 likes
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