Town Mouse, Country Mouse

by Jan Brett

Paperback, 1995



Call number




Scholastic, Inc. (1995), 29 pages


After trading houses, the country mice and the town mice discover there's no place like home.

User reviews

LibraryThing member AbigailAdams26
Based upon the classic fable from Aesop, Jan Brett's Town Mouse, Country Mouse fleshes out the story, adding husbands for the mice, and dangerous predators, in the shape of a cat and owl. When the town mice switch homes with the country mice, both couples think that they will have a wonderful time,
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but discover instead that the "other" half also experiences its share of discomfort, and that, in the end, home is best. Will the owl and the cat feel the same...?

I found this picture-book adaptation charming, and enjoyed Brett's distinctive artwork, with its colorful palette and attention to detail. The side-panels, which feature the owl and cat, respectively, tell their own story. I was particularly struck by the ending, which seems to emphasize the fact that sometimes we need to learn lessons for ourselves.
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LibraryThing member KellyAnnGraff
In this mouse-y retelling of the classic “grass is always greener” fable, Brett’s simple and familiar narrative support her incredibly complex illustrations and compositions. Every page has its own untold story which is delightful to unpack and discover. Though the content of the images are
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playful and fantastical, Brett’s execution is impeccably refined and beautifully detailed. Overall, Bret has more compelling and entertaining narratives I would recommend before this one, but every now and then it’s nice to be reminded of the fact that there is no place like home.
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LibraryThing member jgabica
The moral of this fantasy story is great for kids, as it can teach them to be content in their own surroundings. There are four mice in this story who tire of their homes and decide to switch. However, they then find that they don't like the new home at all and miss the familiar life they had. The
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setting takes place in the town and country, which is important to portray the contrast between the two. Media: Acrylic paint
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LibraryThing member JessicaHill
This was an extremly cute little book. In this story there are two families of mice, one is courntry mice and the other is city mice. Each family prefers to live where the other family is living so they trade places but soon they realize their is not place like home. This story is great for
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teaching your children there is not place like home and no others like family. Book is advanced reading so teachers with emergent readers should read to the classroom.
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LibraryThing member DBPeeples
This book talks about how two (2) mice wanted to trade homes. Each family of mice wanted to swap places because they thought the other place would be better than their current places. Once the town mice go to the country and the country mice to the city, they quickly find out that they did not like
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it. They were accustomed to their own environments and faced new challenges in their new homes. They finally ran back to the old homes where they live happly ever after.
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LibraryThing member setonhansen
In this story two mice couples decide they would like to trade lives from city to country and country to city. They swap houses and learn that they are more comfortable in their own homes where they know what to expect. Both couples end up getting scared and running home to safety and comfort.
LibraryThing member bspentecost
This is a good book to read to students in kindergarten, 1st, 2nd, and 3rd grade. This book shows that the grass is not always greener on the other side. The country mice want to leave to go to the city. They think the city life will be easier. The town mice want to go to the country because they
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think the life is a lot less stressful. They trade places and find out they were wrong. The country mice miss the country and the city mice miss the town. They notice that the altrernate life is not for them. Once they move back the owl and the car talk about trading lives. They should have learned from the mice. This book has such a good moral. I would use this for a read aloud.
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LibraryThing member cejerry97
This is a story of two sets of mice, one who live in the country and one who live in a town. The mice switch places because they think life will be better on the other side. Both sets find out the dangers of living in their new homes and start to miss their old ones. After encountering things such
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as rain and owls, cats and mouse traps, each pair of mice runs back to their old original homes.
Type: picture book, hard
Genre: fantasy
Illustrations: pencil
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LibraryThing member rachel0217
This was a sweet book to read to chidlren about trading things because in the end you might like what you had in the beginning. These two mice trade homes but they want their old homes back.
LibraryThing member rita009
This book is about a mouse couple living in the town, who goes on a picnic into the country where they met a couple from the country. The town couple likes the simple life of the country and the country couple wanted to experience the luxury of living in the city. They decide to swap homes and find
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that things are different then what they expected. Both couples end up fleeing unfamiliar danger, such as a cat in town and an owl in the country, all the way back to their homes.

I enjoyed this book because it taught me a lesson that I think I can teach to my children. You should be thankful and grateful for what you have because things are not always better somewhere else.

In an older classroom setting, I could have my students write their own review about the book. I could also have them write or talk about what they learned from the story.
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LibraryThing member cacv78
Brett, Jan. (1994) Town Mouse, Country Mouse. New York: G.P. Putnam's Sons.
In this traditional tale, the author adds new characters to make this story a bit more engaging. There are 2 couples now, a town couple and a country couple of mice. They run into each other as they are out thinking about
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their present day lives and decide to switch places and homes. As they adjust to their new surroundings, they discover that a country owl and a town cat are making things harder than they thought possible. Both mice couples decide that they don't want to live this way anymore and miss their respective homes so they return to where they came. The end of the story provides an unusual twist where the country owl and the town cat meet and share their desire to exchange places too.
What makes this story unique is the introduction of the new characters- the extra mice, the cat and the owl. It does make the story a bit more appealing but it a little longer and complicated as well.
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LibraryThing member kwiens
Two mouse couples living in a town are enchanted by the simple life of the country; on a picnic they meet a pair of local mice who want the luxury of the city. Homes are swapped, but they find that this is really not what they wanted. A cat in town and an owl in the country become predators. The
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owl and cat end up swapping also. Jan Brett's version, the town mice are as charming and naive as their country cousins not like the traditional story was written. Also the original fable depicts country life as utterly tranquil, but the city mice find that it is anything but serene. Brett's narrative alternates the parallel mishaps of the two sets of mice with lively, clean writing of humor. The illustrations are vivid with small detail. The natural fibers of the clothes of the country mice are as realistic in texture as the fine beaded of the town mice.

Great book that with details of country and city living. I have read the traditional story, which varied from this one. Her illustrations are amazing and bring great detail to the mice in the story. Very eye catching.

This book would be a tool used to teach ways of life and predators of animals. We could use the city and country depiction and make our own model of each mouse with a stuffed toy and doll clothes and recreate the story.
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LibraryThing member MKHowell
There are two mice. They live in different areas and decide that they want to trade places. In the end they learn that neither place is what they thought it would be. It teaches them to be happy where they are.
LibraryThing member caitsm
A "grass is greener on the other side" story about 2 sets of mice who decide to switch places with the other. The country mice think the town must be better the the town mice think the country must be better. Each set is faced with the challenges of the other home and learn that the grass really
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isn't greener.
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LibraryThing member Ms.Penniman
Retelling: This is the charming tale of a pair of mouse couples, one from the country and one from the town, who decide to trade places. They soon find that life in a different place is just as full of peril as their life at home and promptly switch back.

Thoughts and Feelings: Brett has fantastic
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illustrations. The details in this book are incredible. Each page is framed by objects that typify the town or country environment. I loved how she brought the story to life with descriptions of smells and sounds.
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LibraryThing member GWES.Second
Mice from different sides of the tracks exchange homes and find that the grass isn't always greener on the other side.
LibraryThing member RebeccaMichelet
There were once four mice; two town mice, and two country mice. One day the town mice decided to take a vacation to the country side, and the country mice wanted to live in a town home. When the town mice went into the country, they saw the countryside and wanted to live there; so the country mice,
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who over heard the town mouse talking to his wife, suggested they switch homes. Once in the town home the country mice had problems with mouse traps, waking up to smoke entering the room, being chased by a cat, and getting caught in the cheese box. The town mice faced problems as well; they could not find blackberries, got caught in the rain, chased by a black bird, and ran into a river otter, hedgehog, and other animals. As they were running away from an owl, they decided to head back home. The country mice, who were being chased by a cat, decided to return to the countryside as well. After arriving to their home, both the town mice and country mice learned, "there's no place like home."
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LibraryThing member Tinker84
SUMMARY: A town mouse and a country mouse want to switch homes because they both think that the grass is greener on the other side until they discover how dangerous each other's lives really are.
PERSONAL REACTION: I thought it was a humorous book and reminds me how things aren't always greener on
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the other side.
EXTENSION IDEAS: Compare the city life to the country life.
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LibraryThing member mbogits
This book tells a great story of two mice who think that the grass is greener on the other side. Each mouse thinks that they would rather live somewhere else: the country and in a town. But when each mouse gets what they wish, they realize the new surroundings are very dangerous. Eventually, each
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mouse realizes they miss their home and learn to be thankful for their surroundings. It's a very cute story with vivid illustrations.
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LibraryThing member conlonk
I thought this was a really sweet book. It was simple but well written, with very nice pictures. The book was set at Christmas time, but wasn't really about Christmas, which was kind of refreshing. It's nice that it can be a good book to read at Christmas time but not only at Christmas time. I
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liked the message of the story - which was basically about not realizing what you have until you lose it, and appreciating your home.
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LibraryThing member ElizabethNagel
Summary: this book is based on the classic from Aesop, only they have now focused on each mouse. When the country and town mouse decide to switch places because they think that other lives better, they quickly realize that the "grass isn't always greener on the other side." In the end, each mouse
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realizes that where they were from originally was the best. Home is where the heart is.

Personal Reaction: I like this book and found it to be intriguing. It was interesting to see how each couple felt when they first switched, and when they decided home is best. It has lots of color, and draws attention to the dangerous predators, cat and owl. In the end the book really focused on making sure that the reader knew that its okay to learn lessons for themselves and some times its the best way to learn.

Classroom Extension Ideas:
1. Tell about where you live and then compare between classmates.
2. color your own town or city mouse and compare they two from where they live, eat, sleep,....etc.
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LibraryThing member Jihan0228
A classic tale of a town mouse and country mouse. A wonderful folklore/ fable that targets pre-k to 3rd grade. The books illustrations are very cute, the mice are dressed in clothing and carrying on as if they are people. The story depicts two mice who are both very unhappy with how they live. The
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pair then decide that they wanted to switch houses. What an adventurous book!
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LibraryThing member katieloucks
always loved this story!!
LibraryThing member GEMaguire
Picture book with Jan Brett's detailed illustrations of the familiar fable. In this telling, two mice couples meet and swap houses. The story alternates between the parallel mishaps of the two sets of mice. They soon realize that the grass is not always greener on the other side. The mice couples
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have had enough of their new houses and back home where they were comfortable and safe.

Grades: K-7

Classroom use: Compare and contrast
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LibraryThing member klamproe
This si the story of two mice couples. One couple lives in the country while the other lives in the city. Each set of mice thinks life would be easier in the other person shoes. The mice decide to swap houses and as they soon find out the grass isn't always greener on the other side of the fence.
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As it turns out each set of mice were better suited for the house that they already lived in and end up moving back to their original houses.
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Original publication date



059022297X / 9780590222976
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