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Bread and Jam for Frances

(Frances the Badger)

4.21  ·  Rating details ·  30,803 ratings  ·  471 reviews
Frances, one of children's best-loved characters for over 30 years, now springs to life even more in Bread and Jam for Frances,beautifully reillustrated in sparkling full color by Lillian Hoban. In this memorable story, Frances decides that bread and jam are all she wants to eat, and her understanding parents grant her wish'at breakfast, lunch, dinner, and even snacktime. Can there ever be t ...more
Paperback, 32 pages
Published January 28th 1993 by HarperCollins (first published 1964)
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Average rating 4.21  · 
Rating details
 ·  30,803 ratings  ·  471 reviews

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Shawn Thrasher
Aug 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing
One of the most perfectly written picture books - perhaps one of the most perfectly written books ever. Every single word is meticulously chosen, carefully placed on the page, like an artist painting a masterpiece. Wipe away the familiar story for a moment, the (just right) illustrations of badgers (?), and the now familiar rite of childhood trope of picky eaters, and rather think about this book as a long, free verse poem. It's a rich, lush, descriptive book that aches to be read aloud, not jus ...more
Oct 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This is perhaps my favorite Frances so far. Frances does not like eggs and makes up a little song:

I do not like the way you slide,
I do not like your soft inside,
I do not like you lots of ways
And I could do for many days
Without eggs.

I can relate, Frances, I can relate.

The illustrations are wonderful, with Frances eating her toast and jam and staring with no small level of concern at her soft-boiled egg.

Frances is a picky eater and pretty soon she is turning down
Aug 04, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children
Even though I don't actually like most of the foods that comprise Frances' particular diet (barring bread and jam, of course), the book always made me really hungry anyway. Adventures in food are such a huge part of growing up, and no book I can presently recall understands, or represents with such joy, the endlessly aggravating, impossible to predict, and hilariously beautiful relationship that kids have with their lunch.
 Danielle The Book Huntress (Back to the Books)
I loved this book growing up. The moral of this story is "Be careful what you wish for." Frances only wanted to eat bread and jam every day. At first it was nice, but she got sick of it after a while. Seeing all the different things her family got to eat, and she only got bread and jam. And that spaghetti sure did look good.
Oct 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This was one of my favorite childhood books and it was fun to revisit it. I still love the artwork just as much, there’s a lot of feeling and expression in the character depiction. It’s a fun story about dealing with the inevitable pickiness of young children as Francis goes from being obsessed with toast and jam to finding a constant diet of her former favorite boring, to enjoying culinary diversity.
Dec 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
A sweet children’s book with an underlying lesson - have too much of something and eventually you’ll get sick of it
Kristine Hansen
Apr 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I couldn't begin to tell you how many times I read this book. I don't know where my copy came from. I certainly never was read to as a child, but this is still the earliest book that I own. I'm going to guess it was probably my sister's first and handed down to me - perhaps it was a Scholastic book? We really did take advantage of those book orders when I was a kid. And for that I'm thankful.

I loved reading this again - there's so many warm and fuzzy memories caught up in the examina
Mar 10, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I was not fair to my daughter last night. I persisted in reading Bread and Jam for Frances, by Russell Hoban, to her even after she lost interest and started standing up and running around on the bed. I couldn't put it down. This is a favorite from my childhood that I am happy to revisit and will revisit again when my daughter is a little older.

Frances is a girl (well, a badger) after my own heart. She'd rather eat bread and jam than eggs. As my friends know, I abhor egg dishes, but will hap
Jul 16, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Frances Loves PBJ's and in the mothers infinate wisdom she blesses Frances with PBJ's at every turn. As Frances sings her feelings from enthusiasm to forced conviction she slowely comes to the realization that variety is not a bad thing and ventures to ask for the spaghetti that others are eating. I love the rationales Frances provides for not eating certain food "but sunny side up eggs lie on teh plate and look up at you in a funny way and sunny-side-down eggs lie on their stomachs and wait and ...more
Feb 07, 2011 rated it liked it
Bread and Jam For Frances personifies a young female badger as a fussy eater who loves bread and jam. The illustrations in this book are very soft employing pastel colors, soft edges and shading. The story itself is extremely realistic, as many children have refused to try new foods at one point in time. This book can help teach children the importance of variety and trying new things as even their most beloved treat can become stale and boring. While I thing the moral of the story is a good one ...more
Jul 16, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: childrens
Probably due to length and vocabulary difficulty, this is somewhere around a level 4 reading book. Perhaps better read out loud by a parent. Story-wise, my children all loved it. Especially my 5 yr old. A story he could completely relate to about a child only wanting to eat their favorite things, it was a plot I could get into as well. Be prepared your child might go the way of the parent in the book and try to get you to feed them their favorite food for every meal until he gets sick of it. Not ...more
Jan 28, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
'I have a thermos bottle with cream of tomato soup,' she said. 'And a lobster-salad sandwich on thin slices of white bread. I have celery, carrot sticks, and black olives, and a little cardboard shaker of salt for the celery. And two plums and a tiny basket of cherries. And vanilla pudding with chocolate sprinkles and a spoon to eat it with.'

'That's a good lunch,' said Albert.

I always wanted a little cardboard shaker of salt in my lunch. One of my very favorite books!
Anna Schubert
I am counting this towards my book total for 2019 because I have reread it so many times in the last month that it probably is equivalent to a mid-size novel at this point. Also, Frances's parents speak to me on a profound level.
Sarah Adamson
A wonderful book for anyone with a picky eater! Frances only wants to eat Bread and Jam. Her mother deals with it by only giving her bread and jam. Her family continue to eat delicious wonderful meals and help her to understand she has other options.
A beautifully illustrated and gorgeous story!
Kris Dersch
Sep 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
One of my favorite books as a child...I was so glad when my kiddo picked this one up at the library.
This is one of my all-time favorites from when I was a kid! I adored Frances!
Apr 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
As long as I am occasionally throwing children's book reviews on here, it should be noted that the Frances books are maybe my favorite to read to Freddy. Every one of them is good. I think "Bread and Jam" is my favorite, in part because of the insanely complicated lunches that the badgers bring to school (and because I remember that one vividly from my own childhood), but really you can't go wrong. "Baby Sister for Frances" is amazing too, and "Best Friends for Frances" is great. They are genuin ...more
Cecily Tordoff
Nov 07, 2018 rated it liked it
Recommend for Foundation and Key Stage 1. Great use of song and rhyme, accompanied by beautiful illustrations. This book could be a great resource in helping children (maybe fussy eaters) understand that sometimes trying new foods is exciting and sometimes having the same things can be fun. Could link well to considering what a healthy diet consists of.
Sharon Barrow Wilfong
Sep 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Frances is a little girl badger who only wants to eat Jam and bread until her mother very lovingly teaches her a lesson that variety can be a good thing.
Dec 27, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children
The next day when the bell rang for lunch, Albert said, "What do you have today?"

"Well," said Frances, laying a paper doily on her desk and setting a tiny vase of violets in the middle of it, "let me see." She arranged her lunch on the doily.

"I have a thermos bottle with cream of tomato soup," she said.
"And a lobster-salad sandwich on thin slices of white bread.
I have celery, carrot sticks, and black olives,
and a little cardboard shaker of salt for the celery.
And two plums and a tiny baske
A fussy eater. I have one of those. Maybe two... sometimes three. So, even though this was part of of 1st grader's literature curriculum it was helpful in dealing with my four year old's food issues... especially eggs! How appropriate indeed! I may have to try the tactics employed here. ha!

Some of the words were a bit more challenging for my 1st grader but she persevered and read what I asked her to read. It's longer so I don't expect her to read all of it but she is able to decode m
Jan 22, 2015 rated it liked it
There isn't too much to say about this one. It's a cute story to read to kids who are very picky eaters. It helps them see that eating different things can actually be fun and delicious. I didn't really want to read this children's series before and this one book will satisfy my minimal curiosity for it. I now have a new recommendation for parents looking for a cute, fluffy story to read to their children.
I chose this book because EW magazine aka MY FAVORITE MAGAZINE has selected this book as 50 books children need to read and decided to read it! Overall it was rather dull and not surprising.

This is about Frances who only wants to eat bread and jam. So her parents used pretty much reverse psychology to make her eat regular food. Even if I was little and reading this I would not have been captivated by this story.
One more, please!
Jan 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
An instant favorite. How much bread and jam can one badger eat? Turns out not as much as she thinks. Frances thinks all she wants and needs is bread and jam but when she sees the variety of food around her, her preference for bread and jam decreases as she starts to see value in trying new things. Great story for kids as sometimes they tend to be picky eaters.
May 05, 2013 rated it liked it
This was one of my favorite books as a child and then my children enjoyed reading as well. Hoban created a delightful children's story that was both entertaining and with a moral. I'm not sure I have ever used the word "delightful" before in a review but here it applies, yes this was delightful and a good story for children and a fine book for adults to read to children.
Jul 17, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children-s
About picky eaters and really a model for parenting, this has been a favorite of mine for a long time - but not for those reasons! Such cute illustrations of little Frances the badger who is very fond of jam. I like the pace of it and it's gentle conclusion.
Ms Threlkeld
Nov 02, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-books
I remember enjoying this book as a kid, so I thought I'd revisit it as a soon-to-be mom. While I like the message and Frances is extremely likable, the book is so text-heavy that I imagine most kids would lose interest about halfway through.
Frances learns to branch out from just her familiar favorites.
Aug 03, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: my godson
So glad my nephews and nieces are enjoying the badger my siblings and I grew up with!

What I am is tired of jam!
Robin Hobb
Feb 22, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: for-kids
The perfect book for adults who are dealing with a picky eater. I love Frances and her little songs.
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brouilleur 1 2 Aug 30, 2017 03:01AM  
Picturebooks 3 7 Mar 26, 2012 09:32PM  
Loved reading this aloud to kids! : ) 3 13 Aug 06, 2011 07:19PM  

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Russell Conwell Hoban was an American expatriate writer. His works span many genres, including fantasy, science fiction, mainstream fiction, magical realism, poetry, and children's books. He lived in London, England, from 1969 until his death. (Wikipedia)

Other books in the series

Frances the Badger (7 books)
  • Bedtime for Frances
  • A Baby Sister for Frances
  • A Birthday for Frances
  • Best Friends for Frances
  • A Bargain for Frances
  • Egg Thoughts and Other Frances Songs