Little Rabbit and the Meanest Mother on Earth

Overview

Little Rabbit hears the drums and watches performers parade by. He really wants to go to the circus! His mother says he may go, but only after he cleans his playroom. Little Rabbit tries, but it’s no use. There’s only one thing to do: Join the circus and sell one hundred tickets to see the Meanest Mother on Earth! She’s terrifying! She’s not fair!

Mother Rabbit is tough, but only because she loves her Little Rabbit. He starts to understand this at the last sleepy moment, as he ...

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Overview

Little Rabbit hears the drums and watches performers parade by. He really wants to go to the circus! His mother says he may go, but only after he cleans his playroom. Little Rabbit tries, but it’s no use. There’s only one thing to do: Join the circus and sell one hundred tickets to see the Meanest Mother on Earth! She’s terrifying! She’s not fair!

Mother Rabbit is tough, but only because she loves her Little Rabbit. He starts to understand this at the last sleepy moment, as he snuggles up under a homemade circus tent in his now clean playroom.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Chimerical details abound in this strong follow-up to Little Rabbit and the Night Mare. Even though he wants to see the circus, Little Rabbit's mother directs him to first clean his out-of-control playroom, shown complete with framed bug specimens, assorted toys, and other creations. Sneaking out of his window, Little Rabbit decides to join the circus. His claim to fame: he has the “Meanest Mother on Earth.” Selling tickets, he promises: “She has two heads. And green teeth!” But when the audience is less-than-wowed by his mean mother, she has the last laugh (and he has a change of heart). Charmingly off-kilter, with emotions that are spot on. Ages 3-7. (Apr.)
Children's Literature - Emily Griffin
The circus is in town and Little Rabbit wants nothing more than to go and see the show. Mother Rabbit says he must clean his messy playroom first, but this seems like an insurmountable task to Little Rabbit. Furious at the injustice of it all, he runs away to join the circus. His claim to fame? Having the Meanest Mother on Earth! When the ringmaster instructs him to sell one hundred tickets to the evening's show, Little Rabbit goes around pitching a "Mysterious Marvel of a Maternal Monstrosity." When he arrives with Mother Rabbit (having promised her a surprise), the audience is not pleased. Where is the terrifying, two-headed, green-toothed monster they were led to expect? As Little Rabbit clings to his mother in the middle of the ring, she announces that she will show the audience something guaranteed to terrify. Then, she leads all the animals back to Little Rabbit's playroom, where everyone is shocked and horrified by the mess and the smell! Mother Rabbit offers tour souvenirs of the Messiest Room on Earth, and voila! Little Rabbit's room is clean. All ends well with Little Rabbit sleepily promising that next time he will clean his playroom himself, and Mother Rabbit reassuring her son that she is actually the Luckiest Mother on Earth. Sisters Kate and Sarah Klise have developed an enthusiastic fan base, and it is easy to see why. This is a delightful blend of story and art. The acrylic spreads evoke a vintage circus tone and capture the detailed mess of Little Rabbit's playroom. This book could be used to discuss behavior and chores or mother/child disagreements—or it could be enjoyed as simply a great tale. Reviewer: Emily Griffin
School Library Journal
K-Gr 2—Little Rabbit wants to attend the circus, and his mother says that he can, but first he has to clean his totally trashed playroom. After a failed attempt, he sneaks away to join the circus. If he can sell 100 tickets to his new act featuring the Meanest Mother on Earth, the ringmaster will be happy to have him join. Little Rabbit easily sells the tickets after spinning a web of exaggeration extolling the traits of his "Mysterious Marvel of a Maternal Monstrosity." He touts her as having two heads with green teeth and enjoying punishing the small and innocent. When he lures his mother to the Big Top, the crowd turns on him due to his false advertising. The woman guarantees to show them something really terrifying—Little Rabbit's playroom. The crowd is awed by the "Emporium of Odiferous Oddities," and Mother instructs them to take a souvenir or two on the way out. Soon the room is tidy and Little Rabbit declares that next time he will simply do it himself. Using single and double pages, the artist populates this story with an array of animals, plenty of detail, and the perfect mix of colors. Children should relate to this circus tale, and parents will enjoy how the mother saves the day.—Catherine Callegari, Gay-Kimball Library, Troy, NH
Kirkus Reviews
When the circus comes to town, a young rabbit will do anything to attend, up to and including turning his mother into the main attraction. Outraged by his mother's demands that he clean his playroom before he goes to the show, Little Rabbit concocts a plan to run away and join circus life. The ringmaster (a Dalmatian) says he can join if he can sell 100 tickets to his act. In true carny fashion, he weaves elaborate tales of "The Meanest Mother on Earth" to woo paying customers. Although trickery lands his mother in center ring, she slyly turns Little Rabbit's plans topsy-turvy. Soon the crowd is viewing the "Messiest Room on Earth"-much to Little Rabbit's chagrin. Klise's dialogue delights in the flamboyant language of carnivals while her sister's color-saturated acrylic paintings deftly reflect the story's over-the-top tone. This gem of a tale offers respite, in the form of comic relief, from the age-old skirmish between parents and children over cleaning up. (Picture book. 3-7)
From the Publisher

"Little Rabbit wants to attend the circus, and his mother says that he can, but first he has to clean his totally trashed playroom . . . Using single and double pages, the artist populates this story with an array of animals, plenty of detail, and the perfect mix of colors. Children should relate to this circus tale, and parents will enjoy how the mother saves the day."—School Library Journal
 
"Charmingly off-kilter, with emotions that are spot-on."—Publishers Weekly
 
"The Klises once again offer delightful storytelling and art, with winsome, decidely toylike animal characters. Young fans will enjoy Little Rabbit's antics, even if his room does end up getting cleaned."—Booklist
 
"This gem of a tale offers repsite, in the form of comic relief, from the age-old skirmish between parents and children over cleaning up."—Kirkus

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780152062019
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Publication date: 4/12/2010
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 779,802
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.10 (w) x 10.20 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author


Kate Klise is the author of many punny and funny middle grade novels, including all of the books in the popular 43 Old Cemetery Road series. She has also written a number of picture books and young adult novels. Ms. Klise lives in Norwood, Missouri. For more information about Kate, visit www.kateandsarahklise.com.

M. Sarah Klise illustrates picture books and middle grade novels with a graphic twist. She also teaches art to children and adults in the Bay Area in California. For more information about Sarah, visit www.kateandsarahklise.com.

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