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Mars Needs Moms!
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Mars Needs Moms!

4.11  ·  Rating Details  ·  728 Ratings  ·  180 Reviews
Milo doesn't get it: What's the big deal about moms? They're just slave-driving broccoli bullies. Yet they are worshipped the world over! Perhaps even the galaxy over-because here come Martians and they're after one thing only: moms. Milo's mom in particular! That's quite a long way to come for a mom-could it be that Milo has been overlooking something special?
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published April 10th 2007 by Philomel Books
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,021)
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Nov 21, 2011 Eli rated it it was ok
I really did not like this book. However, I have to start by acknowledging the fantastic illustrations (If I could rate them separately, I'd give the illustrations 4 stars and the story 1).

Onward to the plot.

The protagonist is a little boy who can't stand his mother and sees her as a nagging tyrant out to ruin his life. One day she is kidnapped by martians seeking moms for their motherless planet. The boy follows the martians and ends up almost dying in the unfavorable martian atmosphere. His
L13 Tracy Beling
Feb 11, 2013 L13 Tracy Beling rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this 2008 Golden Duck award winner. The illustrations are wonderful and have so much emotion and detail in them, it's impossible not to understand the feelings of the characters.

This is the story of a little boy who doesn't understand what's so special about mothers. They're "giant, summer-stealing, child-working, perfumy garden goblins," and "bellowing broccoli bullies and carrot-cuddling cuckoos." Then one night, his mother is abducted by Martians and taken to their planet. Th
Jul 29, 2013 Hamster rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: People who hate moms
I can see why this was made into a movie.
It's a deceptively simple book full of powerful emotion.
How powerful?
I got teary both times I read it to my kids.
Yeah, I'm a mamma's boy, what of it?
I told my wife that I cried and she laughed at me.
Obviously her relationship with her mother needs work.
This picture book was a 2008 Golden Duck Award winner. It’s the story of a young boy named Milo who thinks moms have no redeeming qualities. They’re broccoli bullies, ogres, humorless tyrants, etc., etc., etc. One night, Milo has a dream that his mother gets kidnapped by a Martian spaceship, because Mars needs moms to do all the things they (moms) do on Earth. You see, Martians grow from the ground like vegetables, so they don’t have mothers of their own, which is why Earth moms are needed. Milo ...more
L12 _Lisa
Feb 16, 2012 L12 _Lisa rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy-sci-fi
On Mars, there are no mothers. No mothers to cook, clean, or carpool, no mothers to bake, bandage, or baby you, no mother to kiss you, miss you, or even discipline you. And so the Martians have been watching, waiting, and planning. And there's one little boy who cannot for the love of Mike figure out what's good about his mother. She a "bellowing broccoli bully" and a "slave-driving, trash-mashing, rubbish odor ogre." Milo cannot possibly imagine what's so special about her. And after one especi ...more
Feb 12, 2010 Heidi rated it liked it
Ages 4-10
2008 Golden Duck Award Winner
Although I am not usually a fan of digital artwork, there was something undeniably charming and funny about these images. Berkeley Breathed creates appropriately surreal settings on Earth and on Mars. I especially like the juxtaposition of the computer generated drawings and the pared down black and white sketches. The fantastic visual quality of this book was, for me, soured by the one-dimensional, stereotypical portrayal of the mother. Curlers in her hair?
Alex Martinez
May 03, 2015 Alex Martinez rated it liked it
Mars Needs Moms! is a story written and illustrated by Berkeley Breathed. It is about a young boy named Milo who just does not appreciate mothers. He thinks they are just here to feed kids carrots and broccoli and take the fun out of everything. However, next door on Mars are aliens who feel the very opposite as Milo. They worship moms. And now they are on their way to Earth to take them all. Milo investigates the planet to see what is going on. During his adventure he realizes just how importan ...more
Mar 28, 2015 Garrett rated it it was amazing
I knew Berkeley Breathed from his comic Bloom County, which I rather enjoyed. If you are unfamiliar with it, lets just say it wasn't the most reverent of comics. So I came away fromMars Needs Moms both not surprised and surprised. I wasn't surprised about the very blunt and disrespectful way that Breathed had his main character describe moms in the beginning, nor was I surprised at the over the top stereotypical illustrations (especially the ones found on pages 14 and 15. I was however pleasantl ...more
Tender, funny, sly and good natured by turns, Mars Needs Moms! is that kind of goofy book with a soft heart at its center. Like Milo, we often don’t appreciate our moms while they’re with us but we miss them when they’re gone. This slim book points out all the ways that mothers take care of their children—even if their children don’t get why such things as eating broccoli or carrots are important.

The book has softly muted illustrations that vary between color and black and white. Sometimes there
Mar 14, 2011 Tressa rated it really liked it
Shelves: juvenile, 2011
My son wants to see this movie, and his dad found this book when they were at a used bookstore. This is a book I enjoyed reading to my son so he can see that moms force their offspring to do terrible things like wash their hands and eat their veggies because they love them. I might have to make this a night read until it sinks in. :-)
Jan 21, 2016 Jackie rated it really liked it
I'm a fan!

So, ok, I read some other reviews of people who didn't care for the book - thought it denigrated women, that their value was in only being a Mom, that it's too sci-fi... I think they missed the point.

Moms are (generally) good at their job: mothering their children - teaching, nagging, prodding, urging, pampering and loving. Sometimes it feels like the loving gets lost in all the everyday. This young lad needed a reminder, which he got. That his Mom loves him like no other and sacrifice
Jan 03, 2008 Heather rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children
what a great story. Makes me cry. My son wonders why I always cry when I read him this one. LOL
Maureen Sheehan
Oct 17, 2015 Maureen Sheehan rated it liked it
This sci-fi picture book had a similar feel to 'Where the Wild Things Are'. Milo is a young boy who does not think highly of his mother after she send him to bed. He falls asleep and has a dream about Martians kidnapping his mom. They nearly get her when Milo finally realizes how much he needs his mother. He convinces the Martians to help her and let her go. In the end he wakes up in his mother's arms and all is good. This was a unique children's book with very descriptive and lively pictures th ...more
Mar 07, 2008 Kit rated it it was amazing
I don't know what Berke Breathed has been doing with his days since he quit drawing daily comic strips, but if all he'd been doing for the past several years were working on this book, it would be worth it. Martians have been watching Earth and decide that they need moms. Their initial kidnapping attempts go awry. (The scene of a mom with her arms full of shopping and a baby in a Snugli around her neck as the Martians try to lure her with a Starbucks coffee is priceless - as the Martians wait co ...more
Randie D. Camp, M.S.
Mar 08, 2011 Randie D. Camp, M.S. rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
Breathed, Berkeley. (2007). Mars Needs Moms! New York: Philomel Books, a division of The Penguin Group.

Literary Genre: Fantasy (Picture Book)

“Anyone could see that [mothers] were giant, summer-stealing, child-working, perfumy goblins. There was hardly much special about that.” Or so Milo thinks until jelly bean colored Martians from Mars seize his mom in the middle of the night. Milo follows the Martians to Mars and in the process; he learns why mothers are so special. Berkeley’s brightly colo
May 23, 2007 nicole rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-books
By Berkeley Breathed (the same guy who did Edwurd Fudwupper -- also really good!). So the story is this: a little boy doesn't appreciate his mom. He learns that there are no moms on Mars. Aliens from Mars come to abduct his mom to take back to their planet, so they can have someone to drive them to soccer practice and make delicious sandwiches and kiss them and tuck them in at night and call 'em her little man and all that mom jazz. Little boy gets totally bummed out when his mom's taken away an ...more
Sep 08, 2013 Patricia rated it really liked it
Shelves: children-picture
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Wendy Daniel
May 11, 2014 Wendy Daniel rated it it was amazing
Shelves: lis-4700
This poor mother looks exhausted, and her son definitely has no idea how much she does for him. But the Martians know and they're coming to get her so she can run them around and fix their meals. When she is kidnapped and taken to Mars, her son follows her and runs into some serious trouble. This is an inventive book that proves there is no love greater than a mother's love. Kids ages 4-5 years old will love this and will learn narrative skills, vocabulary and print motivation with this great bo ...more
May 18, 2009 Kelly rated it really liked it
This is one of my favorite books. If there is one book to have to read to kids around Mother's Day and beyond, this is it!

Milo, A kid who would fit in with the lovable pranksters and annoyed boys of Maurice Sendak's various books, thinks his mom is an ogre, a tyrant, and then she is kidnapped by Martians!

Milo follows them, stowing away aboard the ship.
He is gleefully happy to see the aliens actually want his mom to do all the things he takes her for granted for doing: driving him to soccer trips
Jun 12, 2014 Mommooshka rated it it was amazing
Like most Berkeley Breathed books, this Picture Book has gorgeous paintings illustrating the story that both kids and adults will love. And more importantly, it has an important message about stopping to appreciate those we take for granted or in whom we only see the negatives.

There is no comparison between this book and the animated movie that shares it's name. This book is much deeper, lovelier to look at, and most importantly really makes you think and feel.

Highly recommended for kids of all
(NS) - Heather Hayman
Oct 19, 2009 (NS) - Heather Hayman rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
This is a wonderful and wacky read for children to share with their mothers. Milo, the main character in this out of world adventure, doesn't understand what is so great about mothers. After all, they make you do chores and eat vegetables and constantly nag you. However, when Martians sneak into his house one night and steal his Mom, he follows them and learns why Moms are needed so badly. At the end, when Milo is in need of help, I am sure you know who is there to save the day. The story ends w ...more
May 28, 2011 Nick rated it really liked it
The worst thing that could have happened to this cute little story was to make it into a feature length film. Now, people will remember the disastrous film version, rather than the very good book.
At the heart of the story is the sweetness that made Breathed famous for the early Bloom County stories. Milo isn't the best kid in the world, and he doesn't understand why he has to eat vegetables, and why he's not supposed to dye his little sister purple, or why his mom is important. When she's kidnap
R. C.
Mar 11, 2014 R. C. rated it liked it
A little erudite for even my well-vocabularied picture book listeners, and totally not developmentally appealing to the same audience. Kids like moms and picture books at pretty much the same time in their life, and the whole premise is based around the reader understanding that moms are a pain in the butt. This is one of those picture books that was clearly published for adults.
Ashley Valenzuela
This is a story about a boy named Milo whose mom is stolen by martians. Thankfully, Milo's brief loss helps him realize just how special his mom really is. This could be used as a read aloud for teaching students about being grateful, but I personally think it's more suited for home use (perhaps a bedtime story).
Apr 03, 2008 Echo rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-with-kids
Ever wanted to read a book with your kids that lets them know how much you love them without being mushy? That's "Mars Needs Moms".

Martians kidnap a boys mother because Mars doesn't have moms & they need someone to drive them to soccer practice, ballet,& playdates & make them dinner & clean up after them. But when the boy (who followed them) falls & breaks his helmet, the Martians, & the boy, find out what it is that moms are really best for.

My boys love it because the b
Kevin Wright
Mar 29, 2014 Kevin Wright rated it liked it
Shelves: childrens-ya
A simple and heart-felt story of a mother's love jazzed up with Martians and rocketships and stuff. Like the best sci-fi, Breathed uses the tropes of the genre in order to more clearly illuminate some of the more overlooked and fundamental aspects of the human condition.
Oct 10, 2014 Paul rated it liked it
Shelves: childrens-lit
Who knows where the author is going to take us, especially with the cover art showing a mother walking a sleepy child in her arms on the surface of Mars. Nonetheless, the books makes a complete circle, the illustrations are hilarious, and Milo grows up a little.
Dec 03, 2009 Rachel rated it liked it
It is a cute story about a little boy named Milo who hates the way his mom bosses him around and tells him what he can and can't do. He gets fed up with his mom, after she catches him being bad and calls her a "tyrant" and she sends him to bed without supper (which is very ala "Where the Wild Things Are"). While he's asleep, Martians land and try to take his mom, but he follows them. What do they want with his mother and does she really care for him, unlike what he thinks? You'll have to read to ...more
Apr 28, 2015 Emily rated it really liked it
Besides the beginning being a little slow, I really enjoyed this book. The young boy is tired of his mom, but when she is away, he cannot stand the thought of her being gone. Most students could relate to feeling this way. Then, a trip to space may just change the boys mind about why his mom is so great.
Jan 23, 2015 Alice rated it really liked it
Shelves: 4-stars
I haven't seen the movie but I guess this is the inspiration? Very cute picture very cute message. I liked it better than the first Berkeley Breathed I read. You learn to appreciate you mom when she is up-ducted by aliens!
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Guy Berkeley "Berke" Breathed is an American cartoonist, children's book author/illustrator, director, and screenwriter, best known for Bloom County, a 1980s cartoon-comic strip which dealt with socio-political issues as seen through the eyes of highly exaggerated characters (e.g. Bill the Cat and Opus the Penguin) and humorous analogies.

More about Berkeley Breathed...

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