cover image STARRING PRIMA!: The Mouse of the Ballet Jolie

STARRING PRIMA!: The Mouse of the Ballet Jolie

Jacquelyn Mitchard, , read by the author. . Harper Children's Audio, $22 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-06-074742-8

With a bright and generally cheery reading sparked with an occasional hint of sarcasm, bestselling author Mitchard (writing her first children's novel) invites listeners backstage to meet the mice of the Ballet Jolie, which performs in special theater nooks and crannies in New York City. Descended from a great French mouse ballerina, young Prima appears destined to be a star of the dance. Prima's dark coloring, exceptionally long legs and pink paws "as delicate as the sugar roses on a birthday cake" presumably mark her for greatness. But Prima has the self-confidence and ambition to surpass her natural gifts—she wants to do the unthinkable: perform for human people. When she's punished for sneaking onstage during a performance for humans, Prima's career changes course. She meets up with a young human named Kristen and finds her way to a New York apartment and eventually to Paris, where she also finds romance. Amusing mouse and place names—e.g., the Mezzanina and Snacketta families, Whiskerella —help create a parallel dance world that aspiring ballerinas can appreciate (though some older listeners may find it cloying). Ages 8-10. (June).