Jill's Reviews > Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH

Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH by Robert C. O'Brien
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's review
Jan 17, 2011

it was amazing
bookshelves: newbery-medal
Read from January 14 to 17, 2011 , read count: 2

1972 Newbery Medal.

I remember really liking this as a kid. It was the first time I thought through the implications of animal testing and the impact technological advances can have on the natural world. I just finished reading it for the second time and loved it. This is one of a handful of books I could read over and over and not grow tired of. So many strong main characters--Mrs. Frisby, Justin, Jonathan Frisby, Nicodemus--they each have moments of bravery and calculated risk and the amazing thing is their story is believable. You feel like you're right there with them and can't put the book down until you know the fate of the rats. It's a wonderfully written story and one of the most deserving Newbery Medal winners in my opinion.

"Birdbrain, thought Mrs. Frisby, and then recalled what her husband used to say: The size of the brain is no measure of its capacity. And well she might recall it, for the crow's head was double the size of her own."

"Mrs. Frisby could not quite get rid of a nagging worry that kept flickering in her mind; it was the kind of worry that, if you push it out of this corner of your thoughts, pops up in that corner, and finally in the middle, where it has to be faced."

"She remembered something her husband, Mr. Frisby, used to say: All doors are hard to unlock until you have the key. All right. She must try to find the key. But where? Whom to ask?"

Jenner: "You've got this idea stuck in your head. We've got to start from nothing and work hard and build a rat civilization. I say, why start from nothing if you can start with everything? We've already got a civilization."
Nicodemus: "No. We haven't. We're just living on the edge of somebody else's, like fleas on a dog's back. If the dog drowns, the fleas drown, too."


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