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In this collection of 16 short stories, Peter Rabbit learns how many of his neighbors in the Green Forest and the Green Meadows have come to have the attributes they have. Sometimes Grandfather Frog will tell Peter a story but there are other neighbors who also share their “knowledge” with him. For example, Peter wants to know why Mr. Weasel is an outcast. Peter would also like to know why Johnny Chuck sleeps all winter and gets so fat before he goes to sleep. Why is Howler the wolf called Howler? Why can’t Hooty the Owl move his eyes from side to side? Since Grandfather Frog has lived a long time, he is willing to tell stories to Peter and his friends about how some of these things happened (according to Grandfather Frog). As with all Thornton W. Burgess stories, there are lessons about learning and having good moral values in life.
Thornton W. Burgess was a conservationist and author of children’s stories. He loved the beauty of nature and its living creatures so much that he wrote about them for 50 years. By the time he retired, he had written over 170 books and 15,000 stories for a daily newspaper column.