fulfilling my vow to read all the sequels i never knew existed to books i loved when i was little.
THIS IS THE END
this is both the final bunnicula book and the final book by “harold x.” after this, there’s a series called “tales from the house of bunnicula,” but bunnicula does not appear in these books, and they are ‘written’ by howie. not james howie, but howie the little wirehaired dachshund who is maybe-maybe not part werewolf. i’m not going to be reading any of those – i feel i’ve upheld my end of my vow to read the bunnicula sequels, but i will miss that little bunny, even though he’s barely in the books to begin with.
bunnicula does appear in this one, and i guess he technically meets edgar allan crow, but not to the extent that this crow face-off depicted on the cover seems to promise. however, this final volume does answer the questions i’d been asking myself ever since Nighty-Nightmare’s BIG REVEAL that somewhere in centerville, there were baby bunniculas hopping around. (my questions being WHERE ARE THESE BABY BUNNICULAS? and ARE WE EVER GOING TO HEAR MORE ABOUT OR SEE ANY OF THESE BABY BUNNICULAS?)
1) kyle’s house
bonus fact: one of the boy bunnies is named “Sonnicula,” BECAUSE HE IS THE SON OF BUNNICULA.
it’s a weird little book and i’m not sure what to pull out of it for review purposes – i doubt anyone is ever even going to read this review so it doesn’t matter WHAT i do here.
so, with that freedom, a review made up of random, scattered thoughts:
pete has a cell phone. this blows my mind. obviously, kids in books today will have cell phones. but the veryfirst bunnicula book was published in 1979, and i read it some years after that, but still many years before the industrial revolution would give us cellphones. pete talking on a cell phone feels anachronistic, even though it isn’t, and it just messes with my mind to see characters familiar to me from my childhood acting all modern.
also messing with my mind is that fact that this seventh volume pubbed in 2006, and the cell-phone-having pete is only twelve years old. which means that bunnicula in all likelihood is NOT the vegetable-sucking vegan vampire we have been led to believe, but has turnt the entire monroe family into never-aging minions, probably long ago.
so, plot: pete wins an essay contest with what is an objectively meandering essay, and the prize is that his favorite writer, m.t. graves, is coming to speak to his class! and… stay at his house. with his pet crow. this is a weird contest, but a genius move for thrifty or financially-challenged authors – just couch-surf your way through your fans.
m.t. graves, in addition to having a dorky pen name, is an r.l. stine type, who looks like WHAT IF NEIL GAIMAN WAS TIM BURTON AND ALSO JIMMY PAGE?
i appreciate this second acknowledgment in the post-trilogy world of bunnicula that maybe toby’s weekly habit of feeding harold chocolate is not commendable:
”’My brother Toby gives Harold chocolate treats, which everybody knows you’re not supposed to do, because chocolate can make dogs sick. I don’t think it has hurt Harold, though, except maybe in the brains department. He’s no Einstein, if you know what I mean.’”
the above is extracted from pete’s essay, which you can see for yourself is both not an award-winning essay and also rude. RUDE. (also rude is an author inviting himself to stay at your house and then asking to keep one of your pets at the end of it. rude.)
footnote to that essay-excerpt – harold eats broccoli in this book, which feels exactly like he is getting the cookie monster contemporary reform treatment.
chester makes spreadsheets. this just makes me happy.
this book has many biiirrrrds in it and it is terrifying:
All at once there was the most alarming racket coming from our backyard. It sounded like the caws of a thousand crows. When we ran to look out the dining room window, my speculation was confirmed. There, filling the yard like a black cloud, were more crows than I’d ever seen in one place, screeching raucously as they swooped from tree to tree. Their presence made the dark sky even darker.
many remarks are made about the movie The Birds and references to birds pecking out people’s eyes which i think is as important a PSA as the “maybe don’t feed your dogs chocolate” one.
why have i never had a pretzel-crust jello mold with pineapple chunks in it? what is my life even for?
bunnicula is very cute when he sleeps, although he is also made vulnerable by sleeping through such danger, with all those birrrds around him. protect him, toby!
boundaries dissolve: james howe name-drops himself in this book, referenced as a popular children’s book author, and m.t. graves complains about the popularity of a certain “boy wizard” hurting his book sales.
what else do i have to say about this book? i guess nothing!