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Harriet, You'll Drive Me Wild!

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4.04  ·  Rating Details ·  536 Ratings  ·  75 Reviews
Harriet doesn't mean to be pesky. Sometimes she just is. And her mother doesn't mean to lose her temper. Sometimes she just does.
But Harriet and her mother know that even when they do things they wish they hadn't, they still love each other very much.
Paperback, 32 pages
Published May 1st 2003 by HMH Books for Young Readers (first published 2000)
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(showing 1-30 of 853)
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Nicole Doerr
Apr 09, 2012 Nicole Doerr rated it liked it
Shelves: children-s-lit
"Harriet You'll Drive Me Wild!" is a adorable book about a young girl name Harriet. This book is a contemporary realistic fiction aimed at preschool or school aged children. Throughout the book Harriet is being a handful for her mother. She breaks things and makes messes everywhere all day long.She is not doing thing intentionally but they are just happening. Her mother tried to remain calm and not yell. At the end of the book, her mother does yell at her. She quickly apologizes and says somethi ...more
Cecilia
Oct 04, 2011 Cecilia rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Mothers with daughters
I change Harriet's name to my daughter's name. It works better that way.
Sandra
Aug 27, 2015 Sandra rated it really liked it
Harriet is really trying not to misbehave, and her mom is really trying not to get mad at her. But sometimes both things happen. It's touching to see how both of them are trying hard. Mom doesn't like to yell. Harriet says she is sorry, and she means it. The best part is that they both can be forgiving, with themselves and with the other, and then try again.
It's a strong point of this story that both, mom and Harriet, have to effort to control themselves, this way parents and kids can relate wi
...more
Sylvester
Nov 18, 2015 Sylvester rated it it was amazing
5* art
5* story

Squirt asks for this one again and again. For some reason he is fascinated by the conflict between this mother and daughter (?!!!) When it comes to the part where the mother finally loses her temper and yells and yells and yells, he wants me to read it quietly, "Not too loud, Mommy." He could've written this book himself, he's been through it so many times. Including the part where Mommy has to apologize for yelling. What an awesome book! Kids need to understand these situations. A
...more
Cruth
Author: Mem Fox
Illustrator: Marla Frazee
First published: 2000

"Her mother didn't like to yell, so instead she said,
'Harriet, my darling child. Harriet, you'll drive me wild.
Harriet, sweetheart, what are we to do?
Harriet Harris, I'm talking to you.'
'I'm sorry,' said Harriet, and she was."


A day in the life of a toddler, with a Real Mum. She gardens, works on her computer, addresses envelopes. And every time Harriet has an accident "just like that", Mum gets progressively more frustrated.

Illustrated
...more
(NS) - Heather Hayman
Oct 27, 2009 (NS) - Heather Hayman rated it really liked it
In this charming story by Mem Fox, Harriet is the kind of kid that most people see as a handful. In just one day, she knocks over her juice, paints on the carpet and falls off her chair at lunch with the entire tablecloth. Harriet doesn't mean to be such a nuisance, and her mother tries to be as patient as possible. Things start to change after more mishaps occur as blood pressure starts to rise and her Mother explodes. Overall, it is a recommended story involving accidents that led to successfu ...more
Sabrina Parsons
Feb 15, 2015 Sabrina Parsons rated it liked it
This book is fun but in a subtle way. It is about a girl named Harriet Harris and how she prone to making messes. She drops jam on her jeans pulls the table cloth off the table, but her mother never yells. That was until while she was supposed to be napping she ripped a pillow and her mom began to yell. Harriet always replied with I'm sorry to her mother when she didn't yell, but this time she was really really sorry. After her mother realized that she had been yelling she apologized as well and ...more
Courtney Dyer
Acclaimed children’s book author Mem Fox brings us a compassionate story about a mother and child’s loving relationship. Relatable for both parents and children, this book is sure to delight all readers, young and old alike. Illustrator Marla Frazee uses pencil and transparent drawing inks to create authentic vignettes that humorously complement this realistic tale.

“Harriet was a pesky child. She didn’t mean to be. She just was.” This story follows a typical day in the life of a toddler who see
...more
Susan
Jan 05, 2015 Susan rated it liked it
Shelves: children-s-books
I'm not sure. Part of me feels really glad this was written. It's about a parent getting "too angry" at their child. It's indubitably great that the topic is dealt with in a book. But it makes a frightening book. So I'm not sure about it or how to rate it. So I am interim rating it 3 stars--in the middle. Signifying uncertainty either way. (Deep down I think I lean toward four or five stars. Because it does raise the issue. But is that enough? Would a child dealing with a parent's getting "too a ...more
Becky B
Harriet's mother tries to keep her temper after each of Harriet's accidents. About five accidents in one day proves a little too much for both mom and daughter, but they work things out.

Adults will find Harriet's string of staining accidents enough to drive anyone crazy. It's nice to see Mom and daughter work things out after they both mess up a little. (I personally think Mom should hide anything stain-inducing from this accident-prone child.) A good book to use to talk with kids about being th
...more
Esther
May 06, 2016 Esther rated it it was amazing
Shelves: own
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Logan
May 30, 2009 Logan rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-book
I got this book because sometimes I yell and it really hurts Logan's feelings. In the book, Harriet is constantly on the move, making messes and destroying things. She doesn't mean to, but it just happens. She's always sorry afterward. Her mother doesn't like to yell, so she tries to keep her cool. Finally, when Harriet tears a feather pillow open and gets feathers everywhere, her mom loses her temper and yells. Right afterward she apologizes and reconnects with Harriet. Just like Harriet, somet ...more
Whole And
Aug 13, 2013 Whole And rated it it was amazing
Shelves: childrens-books
A very sweet book about a spirited little girl named Harriet, her innocent mistakes and genuine apologies and a mother who does not like to yell but mishap after mishap after mishap brings her over the edge. They reconnect quickly and share in much laughter. My daughter LOVES this book.

"Harriet, You'll Drive Me Wild" can be used to as a communication tool to ask your little one how they feel when there are mishaps and how the feel when there is yelling. Finally, how it feels to clean up the mess
...more
Dolly
Apr 02, 2013 Dolly rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
This is a sweet tale about a parent trying to be patient and loving with a very active, pesky and somewhat mischievous child. I love that the parent is able to 'lose her cool' and apologize - I certainly could empathize with her. While I would always want to be patient and loving with our girls, I cannot say that I speak to them in loving, rhyming couplets every time they do something that frustrates me.

The narrative is somewhat humorous, although I had to admit that I cringed at Harriet's anti
...more
Rosa Cline
Aug 24, 2016 Rosa Cline rated it it was ok
Shelves: kids
The illustrations of this book was very cute and I think the author had a good idea behind it. But I guess because I've never really believed in not disciplining your child when they do something wrong. Allow them to be a child but if they do something wrong tell them not just pat them on the head and say it's okay; until it builds up (like it did in this book) and you end up yelling at them. Then they don't understand why that was wrong but the other stuff wasn't.
Carolynne
Jun 29, 2011 Carolynne rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Kathryn, Abigail, Gundula, Malinda, Martha
Shelves: picture-books

Does almost every family have a child like Harriet? Curly haired Harriet does everything wrong. When she gets up from the table the tablecloth comes with her, when she eats half the food ends up on the floor or on the dog, when she takes a nap the pillow is ripped open (but that was NOT her fault, really it wasn't). But "[h]er mother didn't like to yell, so instead she said, 'Harriet my darling child. Harriet, you'll drive me wild." Over and over. Until she does.
As usual, Mem Fox tells a simple
...more
Kelly Powell
This book almost anyone can relate to as most of us have pushed our parents or guardians a little too far sometimes. My favorite part of this book is that is shows the importance of apologizing and how important an apology can be to someone. This will be a great book to have in my classroom to remind my students you may not mean to get upset and be unkind, but always apologize if you do end up getting upset.
Ms Threlkeld
Aug 31, 2014 Ms Threlkeld rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-books
As a teacher, I can definitely relate to this story about a girl who constantly breaks things, gets things dirty, etc. until she pushes her mother over the edge and gets yelled at. The book shows that no one is perfect, we all make mistakes, and it's important to take responsibility and apologize when we make those mistakes.
elissa
Jan 21, 2014 elissa rated it it was amazing
Like David of the David Shannon books, Harriet doesn't mean to be bad, she just makes a lot of mistakes. Her mother loves her dearly and with each mistake finds another kind way to let out her frustration until she finally yells at Harriet. Harriet cries, mom feels terrible. This is an excellent book if you want to talk to young children about frustration and how it affects both adults and children alike. Nothing didactic, just another great and simple Mem Fox story.
Annie
May 04, 2014 Annie rated it it was amazing
This book is similar to the "No, David" book. Harriet's mother is frustrated with her daughter for many things that Harriet does, but in the end, her mother loves her no matter what. It's a good book for parents to read to their kids to remind them that even if they get upset, they will always love them.
Robin Cocheu
This is a lovely book about a mother and a daughter that demonstrates unconditional love and acceptance. A family is a child's safe place to land, but even parents are human and can loose their tempers, while not losing an ounce of love for their children.
Libby
Feb 27, 2014 Libby rated it really liked it
This may have been one I chose more for me than for the kids...but nevertheless, they enjoyed it and we read it several times!! It's a sweet story about children trying not to make messes and parents trying not to yell when they do anyway.
Bethany Lovhaug
cute book about a girl who always gets into trouble (not on purpose) and her mom never yells and the girl always says she is sorry. One day, after getting into trouble, her mom yells at the girl, but the apologizes right away.
Lisa
Mar 18, 2014 Lisa rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books, family
This book demonstrates echo on every page. It would be a great book to read to younger elementary aged students because they could follow along and after the first few pages would be able to read along with the teacher.
Amy Jackson
Apr 19, 2016 Amy Jackson rated it it was amazing
A sympathetic look at a wild day in the life of a little girl who is the very mischief and her mother who, in the end, loves her anyway!
Emma
I don't know, it kind of leaves me cold. Kid likes it, but I think it's a bit earnest or dull or something. Even the illustration style.
Meredith Trotter
Jul 17, 2012 Meredith Trotter rated it really liked it
Shelves: international
Publication: 2000

Grade/Age: Ages 3-9

Annotation: Harriet is continually getting into trouble and doing things that she is very sorry for doing.

Themes: Emotions and feelings, clumsiness, temper, mothers and daughters

Ways to use the book:

Create a class list suggesting ways that we can express our feelings without hurting others.

Use in a discussion about problem solving. Discuss with students how to be a good listener and show you’re interested in solving the problem by being interested in the conve
...more
Nick Shaffer
A cute book that kids can relate to with having parents or siblings getting mad at them. A very easy read.
Shelli
Apr 03, 2013 Shelli rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
Harriet and my daughter are kindred spirits for sure! Both of them are well-meaning, active, often pesky, goof-balls. Because of this I could identify, and sympathize, with Harriet’s mother very easily. Trying to find patience with these mischievous actions becomes more challenging as the day goes on for Harriet’s mom. She doesn’t want to yell, trying her very hardest not to; but like all mothers she has her breaking point. She yells, and both Harriet and mother apologize, forgive and move on. T ...more
Kendra
Nov 01, 2014 Kendra rated it really liked it
Harriet's mama wants to be kind rather than shouting, but every mama loses her temper now and then.
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Mem Fox was born in Australia, grew up in Africa, studied drama in England, and returned to Adelaide, Australia in 1970, where she has lived with her husband, Malcolm, and daughter Chloë, happily ever after.

Mem Fox is Australia’s most highly regarded picture-book author. Her first book, Possum Magic, is the best selling children’s book ever in Australia, with sales of over three million. And in th
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