The Proverbial Mouse

Moira Miller, Author, Ian Deuchar, Illustrator, Ian Deuchar, Photographer Dial Books $11.95 (28p) ISBN 978-0-8037-0195-3
In rhythmic, unforced verse, Miller traces the midnight odyssey of Little Mouse, who ventures through the toy shop in search of a snack. Little Mouse spies several apparent delicacies, only to learn on closer inspection that he is mistaken: ""milk and apples'' are only a juggler's clubs and balls; a ``basket of eggs'' is nothing more than marbles. His disappointment each time is sharpened by an apt proverb offered by one or another of the toys. Little Mouse finally does find an edible treat but only after a chase by the shop cat and the recitation of a homile of his own. This is at once an engagingly childlike and artistically fine, sophisticated work. Deuchar uses shadow, color and perspective to recreate the utter stillness of the middle of the night, an atmosphere in which things often are, indeed, not as they seem. His paintings give off a hint of the surrealthe inanimate toys not only speak but wear a variety of expressionsbut this is balanced by the warmth and lightness of Miller's text and by the animate, friendly figure of Little Mouse himself. Ages 4-8. (September)
Reviewed on: 09/01/1987
Release date: 09/01/1987
Paperback - 320 pages - 978-0-8037-1072-6
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