Books Paranormal and Carnivale Picture Book Challenge 2012 Picture Books Reading Themes

Book Talk Tuesday: Little Rabbit and the Meanest Mother on Earth

It’s Tuesday once again, and this time we join Rock Star Librarian Kelly Butcher’s Book Talk Tuesday hosted every week at The Lemme Library. More than a week ago, we shared a book created by the Klise sisters entitled Stand Straight, Ella Kate a picture book biography that is likewise in keeping with our theme on Circus, Carnivale, and Paranormal twists.

Poster courtesy of our treasured Iphigene

I am happy to have found another circus-themed book by the Klise sisters entitled Little Rabbit and the Meanest Mother on Earth.

I discovered the Klise sisters when I reviewed their beautifully-illustrated YA books Regarding the Sink and Over my Dead Body and I have been a fan ever since. While this particular picture book may not necessarily rank as one of my favorite Klise sisters’ creation, it still has its own quiet and simple charm that I think would appeal to young children who are tired of their momma’s unyielding rules and stringent stipulations.

“Can I go to the circus?” Little Rabbit asked his mother. 
“Of course,” said Mother Rabbit. “If your playroom is clean.”
“I’ll clean my playroom tomorrow,” Little Rabbit promised.
“I’d like you to clean your playroom now,” Mother Rabbit said. “And then you may go to the circus.”

From those lines alone, I am sure there would be quite a few children who could empathize with Little Rabbit’s predicament. Sometimes mothers can really be so unreasonable and soo soo… mean (Oh I would know a little something about that, being a momma myself)! Given the mess in Little Rabbit’s room, it seems unlikely that there would be any buttered popcorn, swinging acrobats, dancing elephants any time soon:

I would invite you to pick up a copy of the book yourself to discover whether or not Little Rabbit got a glimpse of the circus or whether he was stuck in his home cleaning out fossilized after-school snacks and stinky socks! The book in its quiet humor and little twists makes one appreciate fully the love between parent and child, regardless of the mean words that blind our sensibilities to the kindest and most heartfelt intentions. It also reminds us that no matter what we do, no matter our unmindful acts and reprehensible behavior, we shall always find a home (or a flapping homemade circus tent) in a parent’s love (at least for most of us). 🙂

Click on the image to be taken to the websource.

In the jacketflap of the book, the Klise sisters described themselves in this fashion:

Author Kate Klise (left) and illustrator M. Sarah Klise (right) spent many hours as children avoiding the loathsome task of cleaning their room. Instead of punishing them, their mother gave alternatives, like cleaning the basement. Or the attic. Or the garage.

Kate now keeps her room clean in Norwood, Missouri. Sarah cleans hers in Berkeley, California. And, for the record, Marjorie Klise is the nicest (and smartest) mother on earth.

If you wish to know more about the Klise sisters, click here to be taken to their official website.

Little Rabbit and the Meanest Mother on Earth by Kate Klise and illustrated by M. Sarah Klise. Harcourt Children’s Books, New York, 2010. Book borrowed from the community library. Book photos were taken by me.

PictureBook Challenge Update: 15 of 120

Myra is a Teacher Educator and a registered clinical psychologist based in Al Ain, United Arab Emirates. Prior to moving to the Middle East, she lived for eleven years in Singapore serving as a teacher educator. She has edited five books on rediscovering children’s literature in Asia (with a focus on the Philippines, Malaysia, India, China, Japan) as part of the proceedings for the Asian Festival of Children’s Content where she served as the Chair of the Programme Committee for the Asian Children’s Writers and Illustrators Conference from 2011 until 2019. While she is an academic by day, she is a closet poet and a book hunter at heart. When she is not reading or writing about books or planning her next reads, she is hoping desperately to smash that shuttlecock to smithereens because Badminton Is Life (still looking for badminton courts here at UAE - suggestions are most welcome).

9 comments on “Book Talk Tuesday: Little Rabbit and the Meanest Mother on Earth

  1. Oh gosh, I get so antsy when I read a review like this and SO want to know what happened to Little Rabbit and know I won’t be able to get the book from a library…. I may have to scour the web for spoilers! 😉 And I totally remember you writing about the Klise sisters!


  2. I am in love with the title. 🙂


  3. You gotta wonder if Little Rabbit ends up finding a make-believe circus in his room as he pushes all the clutter around. When he was little, our grandson (now 17) might have said his room beats the circus any day—he would go in there (to clean, of course) and play for hours. I haven’t read the story yet but as Joanna mentioned above, I too am curious about what happened next for Little Rabbit.


    • Hi Bill, thanks for visiting! I could probably say the same thing with my own ten year old girl and her messy room. 🙂


      • Hi, Myra. I left a reply to your comment on my blog—not a very efficient way to reply back and forth but I’m not sure if there’s a better way. Thanks for dropping by. Now I’m off to one of your other posts about talking and running down below—I could be here for a while….


  4. Pingback: Carnival of Children’s Literature: A February Round-Up and More «

  5. Pingback: List of Circus, Carnivale, Paranormal Themed Books for All Ages «

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