Frances is a fussy eater. In fact, the only thing she likes is bread and jam. She won’t touch her squishy soft-boiled egg. She trades away her chicken-salad sandwich at lunch. She turns up her nose at boring veal cutlets. Unless Mother can come up with a plan, Frances just might go on eating bread and jam forever!
Bread and Jam for Frances is a classic originally published in 1964 about little Frances who loves bread and jam and refuses to try anything else. Eventually, her parents stop offering other food, and after Frances eats bread and jam for breakfast, lunch, after-school snack, and dinner, Frances starts to get tired of it and discovers a new interest in trying new foods. The earliest readers may not appreciate the lesson unless they have some helpful prompting from someone reading with them. But if the reading happens together, it might be a great way to talk about the picky eating together. As a bonus, the book might introduce young readers to some new, old-fashioned words—like the “doily” Frances uses to set out a nice little school lunch picnic.
I thoroughly enjoyed this story. I have some picky eaters in my home as well. I never considered giving them only one type of food for a while. Perhaps I’ll try it and see if it works for them as it did for Frances.
Lillian Hoban was the author and illustrator of many favorite I Can Read books, including Joe and Betsy the Dinosaur, Silly Tilly’s Thanksgiving, and a series about Arthur the Chimpanzee. She also illustrated many picture books, including the classic stories about Frances.