Mother Bruce – Perfect Picture Book Friday

Time again for Susanna Leonard Hill’s Perfect Picture Book Friday nomination:

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I haven’t laughed so hard while reading a picture book in a lonnnng time. Yes, I’ve smiled, giggled, or uttered the occasional guffaw. But here I found myself laughing through page after page of the most hilarious sight gags that only an author-illustrator can conjure. And my twelve-year-old son who’s too cool for school? He laughed out loud over and over again—and then read it again.

Story: Bruce, the grumpy bear, doesn’t like sunny or rainy days or cute little animals. But he DOES love eggs and makes extravagant gourmet dishes with them. He believes in supporting local businesses (a beehive) and asks Mrs. Goose if her eggs are free-range.


That’s when this San Francisco dweller started laughing. Bruce’s epicurian lifestyle proves uneventful until one fateful day when he tries to hard boil eggs on the stove and the fire goes out, leaving the eggs in a cuddly warm bath. He runs out to find more wood, only to return home to:


Yes, Bruce is stuck with a gaggle of goslings who thwart his attempts to abandon them. So ol’ Bruce makes the best of parenting (as we all do) until it’s time for the grown goslings to migrate. But Bruce still can’t get them to leave. His solution to this problem is downright ingenious and even more hilarious than what has come before. 

And the final twist that follows Bruce’s “dreams of new recipes—that don’t hatch” is a perfect last page. Parents won’t be filing this one away in desperation, saying that “it must be lost.” It’s a book they’ll want to read again and again and again and again to their little goslings.

TITLE: Mother Goose Bruce


PUBLISHER: Disney/Hyperion 2015

AGES: 3+





42 thoughts on “Mother Bruce – Perfect Picture Book Friday

    • Jilanne Hoffmann says:

      Ah, yes. I’m with you. Recently, I watched a video about “factory” farming of chickens. I couldn’t watch the whole thing. Made me ill. Free range may be pricey, but at least it’s more humane. And if you buy unfertilized eggs, you’ve got no worries. 😀

      • FictionFan says:

        I became vegetarian for two years after watching a documentary about chicken-farming. I couldn’t stick it in the end (not being overly keen on vegetables doesn’t help) but I’ve only bought free-range chicken and eggs ever since. Worth it, for the sake of my conscience…

  1. Mrs. P says:

    Just ordered it. I’ll be visiting my grandson at the end of this month and we’ll have a bunch of laughs together! 😀

  2. Vanessa-Jane Chapman says:

    This sounds fabulous! Yes, any parent knows how important it is that the book appeal to the adults too! There were about only about four or five books I think when my kids were little that I loved to read and would always be pleased when they picked them – the rest, after the first few readings, would be like “Really? This one again? Ok, sigh.”

      • Vanessa-Jane Chapman says:

        I remember doing a blog post a while ago where I mentioned those occasions where you sneakily turn over two or three pages in one go while you make up a few brief words to cover the gist of what happened in those pages (Obviously doesn’t work with a book they know well!).

        • Jilanne Hoffmann says:

          Yes, that’s when they start pointing out discrepancies from the last time you read it. I would try that and always get caught. But my husband would fall asleep (out of boredom and sleep deprivation) while reading and start making up his own story before our son elbowed him, saying “Daddy! Wake up! That’s not in this story! If you can’t read it right, I’m gonna ask Mommy to read.” I do recall a post of yours on this topic. Must refresh my memory. I believe it was quite funny.

  3. Ste J says:

    Thus does sound great, perhaps this is a genre that needs more attention myself and others. After all I don’t want to seem snobby. Bruce is a great name and his motices are both honourable and a bit mental lol.

  4. Laurel Leigh says:

    Okay, wait, are you seriously telling me that my mom really hid stuff I lost as a kid so she didn’t have to read/hear/look at it again? I might need therapy for that. Aside from that, I am getting addicted to your picture book Fridays. These are so fun. Keep it up!

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