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The Seven Silly Eaters Paperback – August 1, 2000

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 2-3?In this highly comic rhyming romp that surprisingly (and nicely) twists into a birthday story, Hoberman and Frazee tweak fussy eaters with style and panache. The author's lighthearted touch takes readers swiftly through the arrival of the Peters's seven children?each with a distinct bias for the food that he or she will or will not eat. Peter likes milk of a certain temperature, Lucy demands homemade pink lemonade, Jack limits his menu to applesauce, Mac insists his oatmeal be strained, Mary Lou consumes only "soft and squishy homemade bread," and the twins are strictly egg eaters. While Mrs. Peters lovingly accommodates her brood, Frazee's illustrations energetically depict the true story. Chaos reigns throughout the house as Mrs. Peters squeezes, strains, peels, kneads, and bakes, becoming wearier with every passing year. The minutia of a seven-child home spills around the pictures in a realistic but never obtrusive way, and the artist further bolsters the scenes with individualized and effective facial expressions and body postures. When Mother's birthday approaches, the children, taxing in their dietary demands but nonetheless loving, decide to treat her to "A breakfast made of all the foods/that kept them in such happy moods." The result, both hilarious and satisfying, could add humor to classroom units on nutrition and to discussions on sibling relationships; the book will also be a good companion to Lee Bennett Hopkins's Munching (Little, Brown, 1985).?Barbara Elleman, Marquette University, Milwaukee, WI
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Booklist

Ages 4^-8. The combination of food and farce makes for an affectionate rhyming picture book about a family of picky eaters who drive their mother frantic. As each baby is born, it makes its rigid nutritional tastes known through bellowing demands. For example, Peter wants milk, but it must be warm, not hot, not cold. Mary Lou has to be fed "soft and squishy homemade bread. Jack--all he'll eat is applesauce. One twin wants poached eggs, the other fried. The line-and-color illustrations extend the silly fun as the comfortable house gets more and more cluttered and chaotic. Father is somewhere in the background, but the focus is on Mrs. Peters, nearly always pregnant, trying to play her cello, and increasingly overwhelmed by the appetites of her family. Then the kids surprise her, and themselves, in a gloriously messy climax that allows everyone to eat and Mom to have a life. Hazel Rochman --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 7 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 3
  • Paperback: 40 pages
  • Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers; Reprint edition (August 1, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0152024409
  • ISBN-13: 978-0152024406
  • Product Dimensions: 10 x 0.1 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (182 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #15,708 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

32 of 32 people found the following review helpful By Tsila Sofer Elguez on February 13, 2003
Format: School & Library Binding
When you rate a children book (one that is meant to be read aloud) you rate the book from your point of view as the vocal reader and not necessarily from the kids point of view. How was the reading from your "reading" side? is it one of the books you hate having to go through or is it fun for you as well? this book is definitely a "10" for all participants. The fatigued mother (sorry fathers, the mother is the heroine here), reading the book at the end of her full day and receiving in this book something to address her side and problems (in picture and rhyme) and the child who enjoys reading about other children funny as himself - and always loves to hear about large families. Former reviewers have saluted the rhymes of Mary Ann Hoberman but I would like to honor the great drawings of Marla Frazee. The story evolves from one drawing to the next, through time passing by - portrayed by changing seasons (Summer - bathing in the lake, Autumn - falling leaves), the mother continuous pregnencies, the part of her hobby (playing the chello) in her life - central when she had one child and then forgotten all together (thrown aside) and again appearing in the end of the story. I find it always interesting (and credible) to hear about other people's problems and this is what I feel when I look at the drawings - their house is also in a constant state of a mess (although she does do her best...), the loads of laundry... the ever lasting need to go to the store, fill the house with food (mother and father are again seen with bags of groceries), isn't that what you do all day? very real and very satisfying. I cannot comment much about the rhymes as I read the (beautiful) Hebrew translation but I am sure the translator had a great original to translate from....Read more ›
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 26, 1998
Format: Hardcover
We have bookshelves full of great children's books and THIS book is one of our top 5 picks EVER! I think the four members of our family all love this book for different reasons. My 4 1/2 year old loves the characters and following each one through from page to page as they grow, keeping track of their silly antics. My 2 year old son likes the sound of the words...and has fun pointing at all the familiar things he see's in the Peter's house that we have in our house too. I love this book for the fantastic illustrations, the descriptive and fun-to-read verse, and also for the way it makes the hecticness of having small children in the house seem so normal! And even though it's a children's fiction picture book, I always finish reading it with the feeling of "well, I only have two silly eaters! I can handle THAT!". HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Roz Levine on March 9, 2002
Format: Hardcover
Poor Mrs Peters is the mother of seven very picky eaters. There's the oldest, Peter, who will only drink warm milk, Lucy who drinks only homemade pink lemonade, and little Jack who eats only bowls and bowls of applesauce. Then there's Mac who only eats creamy oatmeal that has to be strained twice, and Mary Lou, lover of only soft squishy homemade bread. And last but not least the twins, Flo who eats only poached eggs, and Fran who eats only fried. As the children grow, so do their appetites, and soon a very tired and frazzled Mrs Peters can barely keep up."...Creamy oatmeal, pots of it!/Homemade bread and lots of it!/Peeling apples by the peck,/Mrs. Peters was a wreck..." To make matters worse, tomorrow is her birthday and she's sure the children have forgotten. But as she drags herself wearily up to bed, her children hatch a birthday surprise plan, and through a series of unlikely events, come up with the solution to all their future eating problems..... Mary Ann Hoberman has written a gentle and entertaining story that is sure to charm both fussy and not so fussy eaters everywhere. Her engaging, repetitive, rhyming text is full of energy and rhythm, and begs to be read aloud. Marla Frazee's bold and expressive, humorous artwork grows busier and more chaotic with each new Peters' family addition, until it almost spills off the pages. Children will enjoy exploring the inticate illustrations, and finding all the silly and special details. Perfect for youngsters 3-7, The Seven Silly Eaters is a marvelous, manic, romp, complete with a satisfying, happy ending that will tickle the funny bone of every member of your family, and is definitely a MUST for all home bookshelves.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Catherine S. Vodrey on July 9, 2002
Format: Paperback
Prolific children's book author and poet Mary Ann Hoberman has struck gold once again in this funny tale about the seven silly eaters (all children, naturally) in the Peters family. Mrs. Peters starts off as patient as can be, as each of the seven children develops some quirk or another having to do with size, temperature, taste, or type of food that they absolutely, positively WILL NOT EAT. She bends over backwards to accomodate their likes and dislikes, and the result is that the children are able to combine their favorite foods to come up with something wonderful for their wonderful mother's birthday.
The illustrations beautifully complement the story. Artist Marla Frazee's work has something of a Hillary Knight look to it (think early "Eloise" by Kay Thompson), and she beautifully captures the frenetic wiggliness and activity inherent in a family with seven children. Lots of fun for children, especially ones who happen to be (or know!) "silly eaters."
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