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Book Detail

Mouse and the Motorcycle, The

Mouse and the Motorcycle, The Author Beverly Clearly
Publisher William Morrow & Company
ISBN 9780440460756
Publication Year 1965
Reading Level 5.1
Main Character Age 0
Main Character is Not Human
Summary (Publisher"s Summary)
When Keith and his parents step into room 215 of the Mountain View Inn, they don't know they are being watched. But a mouse named Ralph is studying them from a knothole near the floor. And as soon as Ralph spots Keith's toy motorcycle, he knows he will have to investigate. That motorcycle seems to be the perfect size for a daring young mouse to ride! After a harrowing introduction (kept secret from Keith's mother), the mouse and the boy become fast friends. Of course they understand each other: two creatures who share a love for motorcycles naturally speak the same language. From then on, the toy cycle means noise, speed, fun--and trouble!--for Ralph and Keith.

Subject Matter Summaries

Summary Details For Positive Elements:

Friendship, sharing, loyalty, selflessness, keeping your word, and following your dreams are all major themes found in this book. p.63 Keith's generosity extends beyond letting Ralph borrow his toy motorcycle, to providing Ralph and his family with "room service." p.141 With amazing bravery, Ralph manages to get to the first floor of the hotel, to bring Keith an aspirin. p.155 The more responsible you are, the more privileges you get. "If you grew up enough to be trusted with a mouse-sized motorcycle, maybe someday I could earn a big one."

Summary Details For Mature Subject Matter:

DEATH p.22 "Ralph's father [a mouse] had tried to carry an aspirin tablet in his cheek pouch, the aspirin had dissolved with unexpected suddenness, and Ralph's father had been poisoned."

Summary Details For Profanity/Language:

DEGRADING COMMENTS Stupid p.39 Shut up p.54

Summary Details For Sexual Content:

ROMANCE p.40 "As soon as she [the maid] finished her duties she was going out to the parking lot to meet a busboy, a college boy whose job was clearing tables in the dining room." p.76-77 "She was smiling at herself in the mirror and arranging her hair, dreaming, no doubt, of the busboy...There was no telling how long she would stand there in that silly way...'I'll give you the keys to my heart,' the maid sang to herself before the mirror."

Summary Details For Violence/Illegal Activity:

MILD VIOLENCE p.12 The bellboy "sometimes prevented children from hitting one another with croquet mallets on the lawn behind the hotel."

Summary Details For Tobacco/Alcohol/Drugs:

There are no alcohol, tobacco, or drug elements in the book.

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Summary Details For Disrespectful/Anti-Social Elements:

LYING p.14 The bellboy assures the guests that "the management wouldn't stand for mice," when in actuality he is quite aware of the presence of mice. p.41-42 Keith fakes drowsiness in order to stay up and talk to Ralph without his parents' interference. DISRESPECT p.55 "Ralph could not resist sticking out his tongue and waggling his paws in his ears, a gesture...he knew was sure to arouse anger." p.73 The maid calls the head housekeeper an "old grouch" behind her back. p.103 "'Be quiet everybody,' Ralph ordered...'I will tell you what we are going to do.' 'See here, Ralph,' interrupted Uncle Lester, ‘you are pretty young to be giving orders to your elders.'" EXPRESSIONS OF BAD ATTITUDES, ANGER AND/OR MOODINESS p.25 "He had seen a boy...throw his model airplane on the floor because he could not make its plastic parts fit properly". He also saw a boy "who stamped his foot because the batteries kept falling out of his car." p.94 "'I guess I should have known you weren't old enough to be trusted with a motorcycle,' said Keith. The boy could not have said anything that would hurt Ralph more."