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Children’s Book Review – The Mouse and the Motorcycle (1965, by Beverly Cleary)


Short, sweet, and oh so much fun, you will believe a mouse can ride a motorcycle! This is the lovely tale of Ralph, a young mouse addicted to the speed and thrill of cycling, and his friendship with a boy who loves miniature race cars. They understand each other through their mutual love of motorcycles. At least according to Ralph.

That old Milo the Bellboy can talk to Ralph is left as a lovely mystery for us to ponder. Perhaps he has a motorcycle too.

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As part of my daily ten-minute morning reading meditation, I’m enjoying re-discovering old childhood novels. Recently, my sister and I uncovered a whole stack of old books from the 60s, 70s, and 80s.

Beverly Cleary’s The Mouse & The Motorcycle was my first pick to reminisce over. RIP to Ms. Cleary, who died on March 25, 2021. She left us with so many lovely children’s books to rediscover and read to our own children. You can see the booklist on her website here. Did you know Cleary was over 100 years old?

Quoted from “Beverly Cleary’s books have earned her many prestigious awards. In honor of her achievements, she was named a Living Legend by the Library of Congress. Of most importance to Beverly Cleary, the more than thirty-five statewide awards her books won based on the votes of her young readers. Her characters, including Henry Huggins, Beezus and Ramona Quimby, Ellen Tebbits, and Otis Spofford, as well as Ribsy, Socks, and Ralph S. Mouse, have delighted children for generations.”

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dd33803, 07/05/2023

This is a great app. I wish more people would support it

This app provides info about movies, reviews, ratings from people who have seen it before and after viewing. It has links to info about the movies. It let’s you know when there will be a lull in the action and how long it will last. If you want to know what happens during that time, you can check the brief synopsis (you have to click a link, so no accidental spoilers). It has a timer you can set (silent) to alert you to a break. It also tells you whether there is anything extra during or after the credits. It’s really a wonderful app. I’ve subscribed for a couple of years to support the developers, but I noticed some of the links to provide feedback didn’t seem to work today. They also made it free, with voluntary donations to see the pee-times. If you haven’t tried it, I encourage you to do so, and subscribe if you like it. I really hope the app is supported so it can continue to be maintained!

Developers note: RunPee doesn’t make much money but it supports itself nicely. Donations are appreciated, but not required. We’ll add as many movies to the database as we can until there are no more movie theaters.

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The Mouse & The Motorcycle is a charming little fantasy

What stands out about Mouse is its appeal to young boys (the mouse, the child, and even the bellhop are male), but has enough fantasy elements to loop in girls for the ride. It’s fun. It’s funny. And Ralph’s amazing adventures are by no means denigrated by the perils being mouse-sized: being trapped in a waste-basket, climbing down vines quietly enough to elude owls, and the Big Aspirin Hunt. It all feels as real as the epic told by rabbits in Watership Down (my second-favorite novel after The Lord of the Rings).

Mouse is low-fantasy compared to LOTR, but the stakes feel large enough for Very Small Creatures. A clever little story that will make you smile.

(158 pages)

Movie Grade: A-

You can also watch the short — 45 minutes — 1986 live-action movie based on the book, also called The Mouse and the Motorcycle, in full on YouTube and on Daily Motion.

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Don’t miss your favorite movie moments because you have to pee or need a snack. Use the RunPee app (Androidor iPhone) when you go to the movies. We have Peetimes for all wide release films every week, including Twisters, Fly Me To The Moon, Despicable Me 4, A Quiet Place: Day One, Inside Out 2 and coming soon, Deadpool & Wolverien, Borderlands, Alien: Romulus and many others. We have literally thousands of Peetimes—from classic movies through today’s blockbusters. You can also keep up with movie news and reviews on our blog, or by following us on Twitter @RunPee. If there’s a new film out there, we’ve got your bladder covered.


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