The Story of Jumping Mouse
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

The Story of Jumping Mouse

4.04 of 5 stars 4.04  ·  rating details  ·  387 ratings  ·  50 reviews
Based on a Native American legend, this is the tale of a compassionate, courageous mouse who journeys to a far-off land and becomes a magnificent soaring eagle. "Beautifully written and illustrated."--School Library Journal.
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published March 13th 1984 by HarperCollins
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Story of Jumping Mouse, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Story of Jumping Mouse

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 619)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
I love this book. It is such an interesting tale. The ending is so facinating. The artwork is beautiful detailed pencil.
As I progressed through the story I often found myself confused about parts that were told that completely popped out of nowhere and sometimes didn't even make any sense. I wondered why these elements were in the story and why someone hadn't properly explained them to me. The ending was very random and I basically sat there and said, "What?!" I wouldn't recommend this book, it had too many random bits.

*Taken from my book reviews blog:
Feb 13, 2008 Nancy rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
The journey of a little mouse that displays unconditional love. A great tale to include in your storytelling collection.
**** This picture book offers the reader beautiful illustrations which accompany a powerful story of sacrifice and compassion. I found myself wondering what was going to happen next as I read.

A young mouse sets off on a long journey to reach the far-off land the elder mice tell stories of. Along the way he mets others in need who he helps and obstacles. Through it all he never forgets his ultimate goal of making it to the far-off land.

Jumping mouse is a compassionate young mouse who sets out to...more
Rebecca Thomas
1.) Genre- Traditional Picture Book

2.) Summary- After hearing tales of the Far Off Land, a young mouse journeys to find it. Along the way he meets a magical frog who bestows upon him a name (Jumping Mouse) and magical powers. Through trials and difficulties Jumping Mouse meets a variety of other animals all in need of his help. With great selflessness, Jumping Mouse helps the other animals and is rewarded for his good deeds by becoming an eagle who will dwell in the Far Off Land forever.

3.)a.) A...more
This is another picture book more suited for older children, mostly just due to the length of the text. John Steptoe wrote the text (retold from a Native American legend) and drew the illustrations. The illustrations won a Caldecott honor in 1985.

I thought the illustrations were just okay. I didn't like them nearly as much as Steptoe's illustrations for Mufaro's Beautiful Daughters: An African Tale. I think I would have liked the illustrations better in color. I didn't dislike them, but I didn't...more
The story of a determined mouse to get to the far away land, this story was fantastic. It is a Native American tale. The story is about a little mouse that was eager to get to the far off land. His will and determination are second to none. On his journey to the far away land, he has some setbacks, but he is determined to reach his destination. He comes across Magic frog that helps him cross the water. The frog is a great jumper and helps the little mouse on his journey. The mouse is amazed at t...more
Jumping Mouse wants to journey to the far-off land and receives legs that help him jump twice as high from Magic Frog. The journey is far from easy. Along the way Jumping Mouse encounters creatures of all sizes who are in need and Jumping Mouse selflessly gives of himself to fulfill their needs. First he gives his eyesight to a bison. Then, he gives his sense of smell to a wolf, but both creatures are so blessed by Jumping Mouse's gifts that they help him reach the far-off land by offering him p...more
Meg McGregor
One of the most beautifully illustrated stories and a tale worthy of five stars.

Jumping Mouse shows determination, generosity, and self-sacrifice, on his journey to the Far-Off Land.

The pictures by Mr. Steptoe are exquisite. This is one of the stories I would teach my students every day during Native American month.
I chose this book at random from the library shelf, and was disappointed to see I'd picked "a long one" the night I picked it up to read as a bedtime story.

The thing about Jumping Mouse, though, is that it's so engrossing and its lessons are so valuable, I'd have read myself hoarse to get to the end. (At which point, I'm sure a lovely pencil-illustrated forest creature would have given me some sort of enchanted gift in exchange for my sacrifice.)

Regardless, this story is a gift. I didn't realize...more
A Native American legend, The Story of Jumping Mouse is about a young mouse who listens to one of his elders tell of a far off land. He is so entranced by the story that he decides to journey there and so begins his adventure.
This story appeals to Logan's love of animals and the text has a rhythm that's kind of mesmerizing. The B&W illustrations are what drew me to this book. They are detailed, lifelike, and emotionally-charged. The first 5 or 6 times I read this aloud, I choked up at the end and Logan would ask me what was wrong. I found it hard to describe how beauty and transformation can make a person tearful, but I tried. Logan asks for this book frequently. I know that there are many versions of this story...more
**** Caldecott Honor (1985) ****

Vibrant black and white imagery gives depth and nuance to a story of journey and discovery. Very beautiful and well deserving of the Caldecott Honor.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I had never heard this Native American anthropomorphic folktale until I picked up this book for the Caldecott Challenge. It won a 1985 Caldecott Honor and rightly so as the illustrations are gorgeous and it is a captivating story as well. A mouse wants to journey to the far-off land, a place he has only heard about in stories. On his way there, he meets a magical frog who grants him the ability to jump really high and gives him some magic. At each stage of his journey, the humble but brave Jumpi...more
Feb 26, 2011 Stephanie rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Children, Adults, Teachers, Parents
I love this book! I received through a school program when I was the second grade, and it has been one of my favorite children's stories since. It is a Native American tale of a young mouse who faces many obsticales on his way to another land. The mouse learns to be selfless and brave on his journey, and is rewarded at the end. This story is beautifully illustrated (it is a Caldecott Honor winner)and calls to both small children, older kids, and adults alike. I read this story to my Children's L...more
Allison Ford
This book is a Native American legend and it teaches a lesson about our differences. There is also a lesson about what you can gain from persistence. The young mouse overheard the “old ones” tell stories about the desert that was just over the river. He started to dream about the foreign land, and then finally the little mouse couldn’t stand it any longer he had to find out for his self. Once he did reach the river he didn’t know how he would get across. The rest is the mouse meeting different a...more
A mouse becomes an eagle? See, this is why folklore doesn't always work for me. Where does that come from? The mouse is cute and all, and I like that he was willing to give of himself for others, but the eagle connection doesn't make sense to me, that's all.
Erin Sterling
A young jumping mouse hears stories of a far-off land and sets off on a long and dangerous journey, getting help along the way from a magic frog. He gives his eyes and sight to a dying bison, his nose and sense of smell to a wolf, and manages to make it, only to be transformed into a majestic animal. The black-and-white detailed illustrations does a great job at conveying the slow but incredible story of a journey.
Barb Keister
Great story about compassion, sacrificing your own needs for that of a stranger, and meeting your own personal goal without forgetting about the people you meet along the way. Added this one to the "synthesizing" bin in my teacher resources for the important themes and use of multiple comprehension strategies needed to process this text. The cover looks rather drab, but important story!
Lady Lioness
Oh, wow. What a wonderful story about hope and perseverance. The illustrations are gorgeous, black and white pencil drawings, designed to be from a mouse's eye-view. I wouldn't recommend this for a young child as the text touches upon death and illness, but I think this could work for a storytime or read alone for late elementary school to middle school children.
I read this to my third and fourth graders and they applauded me at the end. The illustrations are very beautiful and the story full of emotion.
For some reason, as cute as that little mouse is, the cover of this book did not inspire.

Boy was I mistaken. The art in this book is tremendous--black and white, richly detailed,... fantastic. The story is an interesting one, but not as strong as the pictures. Still, a great example of a Native American legend.
Rebekah Jones
This book is great book to use to encourage others to follow their dreams and never give up because they face difficulties. I like how the mouse puts others first and does his best to help them out. The book is of a journey and it could be related to real life and the journey humans face in reality.
Steptoe's retelling of a Native American legend with black and white pencil drawings follows the journey of a mouse who unselfishly gives up his strengths to assist other animals, ending up without sight or smell. The morality tale works with Jumping Mouse gaining far more than he gave up.
A wonderful story of a little mouse with the determination to never give up! This Native American tells also shows the readers that while you are trying to achieve a personal goal this is beauty in the relationships along the way. Even though I hate mice, I really enjoyed this story.
OMG OMG OMG I FINALLY FOUND THE TITLE OF THIS BOOK!!! I can't believe I even remember this; it was read to my class when I was in elementary school. WOW! I LOVE this story. The pictures are also beautifully drawn and omg omg I love it!!
Mrs. Downs
GR Level: P


This is a story about how a mouse sacrifices for others along his journey to the Far-Off land. As he continues on his journey the sacrifices he makes for others ends up leaving him greatly handicapped. But what will happen to Jumping Mouse?
This is a great book to introduce 2nd graders to Native American traditional literature. It is a fable that has a really great moral. The mouse gives everything to help others with no selfishness. The illustrations are really vivid and lively black and whites.
This is a story about how a mouse sacrifices for others along his journey to the Far-Off land. As he continues on his journey the sacrifices he makes for others ends up leaving him greatly handicapped. But what will happen to Jumping Mouse?
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 20 21 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • The Boy of the Three-Year Nap
  • Raven: A Trickster Tale from the Pacific Northwest
  • The Treasure
  • Peppe the Lamplighter
  • Mirandy and Brother Wind
  • The Faithful Friend
  • Nothing At All
  • When Clay Sings
  • In the Forest
  • Hershel and the Hanukkah Goblins
  • Mice Twice
  • Fly High, Fly Low (50th Anniversary ed.)
  • The Emperor and the Kite
  • Alphabatics
  • Thy Friend, Obadiah
  • Jambo Means Hello: Swahili Alphabet Book
  • The Fox Went Out on a Chilly Night
  • The Graphic Alphabet
John Steptoe was an award-winning author and illustrator of children's books from New York City. He began working on his first children's book, Stevie, while still a teenager and achieved great success during his tragically short career, encouraging the advancement of African American culture by producing work about the African American experience that children could appreciate. Recipient of two C...more
More about John Steptoe...
Mufaro's Beautiful Daughters: An African Tale Stevie Baby Says Daddy is a Monster... Sometimes Birthday

Share This Book