Friday, September 20, 2013
Reader's Diary #1066- James Howe: Bunnicula Meets Edgar Allan Crow
Back June when I wrote about the 6th book in James Howe's Bunnicula series, I wondered aloud how there could still be another book remaining when everything seemed wrapped up and complete. Chester and Bunnicula were finally getting along and the younger dog Howie was poised to take over a spinoff series.
Fortunately Howe addresses this issue directly in the end notes of Bunnicula Meets Edgar Allan Crow and takes away all the guess work. It turns out that he had intended for Bunnicula Strikes Again! to be the final installment. Basically Bunnicula Meets Edgar Allan Crow is Howe's catching of "the one that got away." He'd apparently tried to write it earlier but couldn't seem to get a handle on it. Instead of forcing it, he finally decided to just steal the best ideas that he'd come up with and abandon the Edgar Allan Crow plot in favour of a whole new story: Bunnicula Strikes Again.
Years later however, like the raven that sits eternally on the pallid bust of Pallas, Howe was haunted by the crow and finally gave the story another go.
Overall it doesn't really do a whole lot for the arc of the series, and in that regard did feel like an add-on. However, it does have some really funny moments (my son guffawed a number of times) and is enjoyable nonetheless. R. L. Stine and Edgar Allan Poe are parodied once again, while this time J. K. Rowling is also mentioned a couple times. There was room for a little more wrap-up, however, could Howe have finally revealed Bunnicula's true origins or make him finally speak his first work. Wasted opportunity!
In Bunnicula Meets Edgar Allan Crow, the world famous but reclusive writer of the (fictional) FleshCrawler series, M. T. Graves (who looks suspiciously like Neil Gaiman), is staying with the Monroes. He has brought along the eponymous crow much to the mistrust of Chester the family cat who is convinced that Graves and his corvid sidekick will harm or transform the pets in somewhat or even steal Bunnicula!
And while there hasn't been another book in the series since 2006, I'm not entirely sure that Howe won't eventually do another. One late edition to the series is the revelation that Bunnicula had had an offspring: Sonnicula!