Hoodles' Day in The Woods
by Susan Waterfield

"The smell of green plants and moss was very strong in the deep woods. Being in the woods made them feel excited and free."

Dr. Hoodle is a professor of woodsology and the proud father of two curious and energetic bunny rabbits. During their day trip into the woods, Dr. Hoodle teaches aptly named Spunkie and his little sister, Ivy, about everything from poisonous centipedes and industrious termites, to menacing boars and lurking snakes. The curious bunnies enjoy an eventful day exploring the woods near Woody Water Creek, but are relieved to return to their warm, safe home at the end of the day for a slice of homemade apple pie. While their adventure in the woods comes to an end, Dr. Hoodle already begins planning for tomorrow, when he, Spunkie, and Ivy will set out to gather honey.

Dr. Hoodle's lessons are imparted in a simple way that young readers will understand and appreciate. Apart from information about insects and other woodland creatures, Waterfield also manages to weave in various life lessons alongside the playful, adventurous narrative. When Spunkie wishes he had wings like a butterfly rather than legs built for hopping, Dr. Hoodle encourages Spunkie to "be happy with who you are and what you have," a lucid piece of advice befitting readers of any age. Still, the illustrations, while playful and expressive, suffer as a result of the often very small panels. Many of the illustrations are thumbnail-sized, and the wonderful details are obscured. While the story could use larger illustrations to better showcase Waterfield's artwork, it remains an engaging, educational read.

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