Thursday, April 13, 2006

The Mice of Bistrot des Sept Freres

Kids will learn some French while they enjoy this fun story written and illustrated by Marie Le Tourneau. Le Bistrot des Sept Freres, or The Bistro of Seven Brothers, is famous for its cheese soup. Each year, Chef Marcel and his seven sons win the award for the best cheese soup in all of France. But then disaster strikes - the judge is due in an hour and the Bistrot is out of the secret ingredient that gives the soup its famous flavor! While Chef Marcel goes out to try to get some secret ingredient, the seven brothers run around frantically, running into each other and knocking things over. But amidst all this chaos, it is Petite Michelle, the sister, who keeps her head and saves the day. The Bistrot des Sept Freres becomes The Bistrot des Sept Freres et Une Soeur: The Bistro of Seven Brothers and One Sister.

The Mice of Bistrot des Sept Freres is a delightful picture book with charming illustrations. French words (and their English translations) are interspersed throughout the story. The illustrations are whimsical and child-friendly — the mice just look so appealing. Children will enjoy the chaos in the kitchens as the brothers run into each other and food flies everywhere. As for Michelle, one can't help but feel that it was an injustice that she was left out of the "boys club" and the name of the bistro to begin with, and readers will cheer her triumph.

The Mice of Bistrot des Sept Freres will be published in June by Tanglewood Press.

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