Enter the wonderful world of the following curious cast: the Rabbit who wants to grow up, the anxious Stag, the Soldier at war, the Cat and his recurring dream, the Book that wants to know everything, and the Shadow.

Over the course of ten short chapters they grow up, learn how to live together and to deal with their fears.



It will be a book for a whole family, and for many, many years. {Kate De Goldi on National Radio New Zealand}


An exquisite portrayal of the complex emotions we experience growing up. {Look /Book}


This is a beautifully illustrated and deeply thoughtful picture book, full of emotional resonance. {Page & Blackmore Booksellers}


A glorious presented story, beautifully written and extremely subtle and clever in the way it describes its characters. {Read it Daddy}


An immensely captivating book with deftly explored life issues through the eyes of an interesting cast of animals {Booksellers NZ}


Mélanie Rutten was awarded an Honourable Mention for this title in the Bologna Ragazzi Awards in 2014.


What the jury said:

A flowing, expressive line and delicate transparent washes characterise Rutten’s highly individual visual language. She creates a world of anthropomorphic creatures and walking books that are somehow immediately convincing as they lead us into their bizarre world, a world that is nevertheless full of warmth and friendship.

The Rabbit and the Shadow