Mean Margaret
Illustrated by Jon Agee | Published by HarperCollins

Question: What do a pair of newlywed woodchucks, a squirrel, a testy snake, a skunk, and a couple of bats have in common with a family of pudgy human beings named Hubble? Answer: Their lives are all turned topsy-turvy by a tyrannical toddler named Margaret.

  • "Tor Seidler writes in the great tradition of Kenneth Grahame, Walter R. Brooks, and E.B. White, creating worlds where friendship matters, animals talk, and little girls who listen—even ones as mean as Margaret—can learn a life-changing lot about loving-kindness."
    - ALA Booklist (starred review)
  • "Chock-full of hilarious episodes that will have middle graders rolling in the stacks, this is an ideal choice for booktalking."
    - School Library Journal (starred review)
  • "Seidler gives his sly sense of humor full rein. . . . Though his work runs toward happy endings, I found the finale of Mean Margaret particularly satisfying . . . not because the book was over, but because the ending was so deft. Who could fail to appreciate that what ultimately heals the dysfunctional Hubble is—a better diet? And grown-up readers won’t need a 7-year-old around to relish the rapid-fire resolution of Margaret’s meanness or the joyous arrival of Fred and Phoebe’s firstborn, Patience. In fact, by that point I so identified with the beleaguered Fred, I felt that patience (at last) was its own reward."
    - The New York Times Book Review
  • "This very funny commentary on the demands and rewards of parenthood is blithely genteel even as it encompasses some hard realities (as represented by an irresponsible, offspring-ignoring woodchuck mother; a beer-guzzling, TV-stupored human father; and cold-hearted, kidnapping siblings). Best of all is the language, which enhances the simple story with a sophisticated, precise vocabulary that rivals Beatrix Potter’s famous soporific."
    - Horn Book