John Hardy only lives with his father in Wexford during summer vacation – the rest of the time he lives at a boarding school in the lake district. Their relationship already isn’t the best, but the cavalier manner in which Mr. Hardy surprises John with his new fiancé nearly destroys it. Hurt that he wasn’t told sooner and in a more delicate way, John retreats into a study of rabbits and their habitats.
Will John and his father patch up their relationship? And will John give Sara a chance?
John is very hurt by his father’s uncaring manner and struggles to adjust to the idea of having a new mother. His father, far from realizing his mistake, continues to reprimand John for his hurt response and tries to force John into accepting Sarah. In the end, their relationships are resolved.
The main animal theme was carried out in two threads. #1 – John wants two baby bunnies from the local pet shop and is devastated when his father refuses to let John buy them based on the fact that John is absent from home three-fourths of the year. #2 – John studies rabbits in the wild and (along with James and Mandy) is shocked when several landowners suggest that these rabbits should be killed to prevent them from over-running the land. These men are portrayed as being big bullies who have no natural feeling and are only concerned with their own profit. No heed is paid to their legitimate concerns.
James and Mandy celebrate Easter. In one scene, Mandy “spread her arms wide and spun around on the spot like Superwoman.” [pg. 100]
‘Heck’ is used once.
Conclusion. Not a favorite.
Review © 2013 Laura Verret