‘Oh, I have to see that!’ said the skunk.
‘One ticket, please!'”
(Click to enlarge spread.)
I love Kate Klise’s and M. Sarah Klise’s Little Rabbit books. How about you? Today, in honor of Mother’s Day, I’m featuring some art from Little Rabbit and the Meanest Mother on Earth, released by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in April.
Little Rabbit’s room is a mess, but he pays no mind, since he hears—and sees from his playroom window—the circus passing through town. When his mother tells him he can go to the circus after he cleans his playroom, he gives it a weak effort and then pretty much throws a fit, as pictured below.
And this idea he has, post-fit? He climbs out of his playroom window and joins the circus, touting the promise of his new act: The Meanest Mother on Earth. Oh snap, you say? That’d be right. “If you can sell one hundred tickets to see her, you’re in tonight’s show,” the ringmaster tells him. The spread opening this post gives you an idea of how exactly Little Rabbit goes about advertising his new gig.
Then Little Rabbit had an idea.”
(Click to enlarge spread.)
Having sold the tickets, he goes home, tells his mother he has a surprise for her, blindfolds her, and leads her to the circus. In one very dramatic spread, we see that he’s standing in the middle of the circus ring with a spotlight on himself and his mother, with a full house watching, as the ringmaster announces, “And now, for our final act of the evening, I present to you the Amazing Little Rabbit and the Meanest Mother on Earth!” Eventually, all the animals in the audience are throwing peanuts at the two of them, angry that she’s not actually that terrifying.
Yeah. I know. GULP.
But, like most mothers, Mother Rabbit not only has a plan (hinted at in the below spread), but she also knows a whole hell of a lot about that complicated thing called unconditional love. I don’t want to give away the ending, but I was pleased with it, having wondered in the circus scene how exactly Mother Rabbit would handle Little Rabbit’s behavior. Yeah, he’s a jerk to her, but this is how it goes with kids sometimes. I wonder what Daniel Zalewski of The New Yorker would have to say about this picture book title. I like this one and think it works. And I love the domestic dramas of Little Rabbit’s world—all the great Little Rabbit titles—and think they really resonate with child readers.
‘I have no doubt about that.'”
(Click to enlarge spread.)
And, so…I hope you all mamas out there are having a good Mother’s Day, as Mother Rabbit is. (Don’t worry. She’s okay in the end.) And that’s even if you’re wee one is whining at you, too.
LITTLE RABBIT AND THE MEANEST MOTHER ON EARTH. Text copyright © 2010 by Kate Klise. Illustrations copyright © 2010 by M. Sarah Klise. Reproduced by permission of the publisher, Harcourt Children’s Books, Boston, MA.
As a reminder, 7-Imp’s 7 Kicks is a weekly meeting ground for taking some time to reflect on Seven(ish) Exceptionally Fabulous, Beautiful, Interesting, Hilarious, or Otherwise Positive Noteworthy Things from the past week, whether book-related or not, that happened to you. New folks are always welcome.
Hi, everyone. I don’t want to go on and on and on about my birthday, which was this week, as Eisha made clear, so I think I’ll forego seven separate kicks, except to say that most of my kicky-ness this week was all wrapped up in the sweet and kind birthday greetings I got from friends and family. First of all, I got an iPod Touch. LOOK AT ME, FINALLY ALL 21st-CENTURY. I also had some more of the Emily-Gravett-inspired Chocolate Guinness cake, pictured here, my birthday-cake request this year. My friend, Natasha, also got me a cake, and I had coffee and cake for breakfast with her one morning; I got a blueberry plant; my friend, Jill, gave me a long-distance birthday call; my daughters made me art; and, best of all, my almost-fourteen-year-old nephew emailed me a recording of him playing and singing “Let it Be” on guitar. (I had gotten him a Beatles songbook for Christmas.)
Other kicks-of-note: I had vanilla vodka AND sake at this yummy place, as well as the fabulous and to-die-for Asian wonton nachos; the tooth fairy visited our home for the first time; and I love this video.
Oh, and Eisha’s video for me. That was a true surprise. And now it’s my turn again. She better be shaking in her kick-ass boots.
Thanks again to everyone for the birthday wishes. It was a joyful and busy week (the “busy” part being why I’m behind on reading your—yes, YOUR—blog). What are YOUR kicks this week? And, again, Happy Mother’s Day to all the mamas and mama-types out there. (Lots of my friends have mothered me in one way or another, which is why I say “mama-types.”)
Back in January, you were kind enough to blog about The Order of Odd-Fish fan art show I had coming up in April. … We just wrapped it up! And it was raucous. Opening night was a gallery show of over 100 pieces of Odd-Fish fan art, which turned into a costumed battle-dancing tournament that recreated the “Dome of Doom” scene in the book. We built a dome out of PVC pipes, a costumed marching band rocked the 250+ audience, and the tournament climaxed when we tore the heart out of the winning dancer and we fed her to a huge snake-monster!
Most of the Odd-Fish fan artists—both teen and adult—were in attendance. One man (whom I’d never met before!) came all the way from San Francisco as a character from the book. Dizzying fun! The week after the opening party, I hosted field trips from schools for readings, writing workshops, etc. at the gallery.
Here’s my recap of the night, complete with bizarre pictures, lurid video, and shocking revelations. It was a great night for weirdness in young adult fantasy.
Thanks, James! Man, that looks like fun.