cover image Dakota Crumb: Tiny Treasure Hunter

Dakota Crumb: Tiny Treasure Hunter

Jamie Michalak, illus. by Kelly Murphy. Candlewick, $17.99 (32p) ISBN 978-1-5362-0394-3

In this Night at the Museum–leaning picture book, an intrepid gray mouse, dressed in a red turtleneck sweater and utility belt, uses her nocturnal prowl to scour a big-city museum for treasures—which readers will recognize as things left behind by human visitors. Dakota Crumb creeps and rappels, scooping up a left-behind action figure in a statue gallery, and bravely maneuvering past a feline statue in the antiquities hall until reaching her objective: “the Purple Jewel of Egypt,” a gumdrop that someone has stuck to a stone temple. Michalak (Frank and Bean) drums up the lengthy expedition’s drama, and Murphy’s (Together We Grow) digitally colored pen and ink drawings are both adventure-story cinematic and wonderfully evocative; bathed in pale purples and blues, they capture the after-hours stillness and spooky chill of marbled interiors. The payoff reveals that Miss Crumb’s treasures are holdings for her own magnificent Mousehole Museum, which is open to city critters. And why shouldn’t pigeons and insects be culture vultures, too? Final pages invite readers to find more treasures that Miss Crumb missed. Ages 3–7. [em]Author’s agent: Victoria Wells Arms, Wells Arms Literary/HG Literary. (July) [/em]