Midas Mouse

Ruth Ellwand, Author, David Ellwand, Author, David Ellwand, Photographer
Ruth Ellwand, Author, David Ellwand, Author, David Ellwand, Photographer HarperCollins Publishers $14.95 (32p) ISBN 978-0-688-16745-5
Reviewed on: 09/04/2000
Release date: 09/01/2000
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Photographer David Ellwand (Alfred's Party) teams up with his wife, Ruth, for this whimsical twist on an age-old legend. Though his mother warns, ""Daylight is dangerous for mice,"" Midas is irresistibly drawn out of his mousehole into the dazzling sunbeams which ""sparkled on his fur like gold."" He makes a wish that he could be like the sun, and ""everything he touched with his four pink paws suddenly turned to hard, shiny gold."" As Midas scampers through the house, he leaves a golden trail behind him, from teakettle to violin strings to the once-black cat. All that glitters isn't gold, however. ""We cannot eat golden cheese or golden bread crumbs,"" scolds his mother, and Midas wishes ""with all his tiny beating heart"" that everything could be as it was before. Luckily, the moonlight dissolves the magic. The charm of this economically told tale lies in the black-and-white photographs, which Ellwand softens with sepia tones and gilds with gold touches where Midas leaves his trail. Close-ups of the bright-eyed and bewhiskered hero may well cause a run on mice at the pet store. All ages. (Sept.)
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