A hungry mouse gets more than she bargained for when she tries to shake loose a tasty nut in Vignocchi, Chiarinotti, and Borando’s debut collaboration.
Opening vertically to emphasize the tree’s impressive height, the first spread of this energetic picture book shows a small mouse looking up longingly at a nut high in a tree. Hungry, she declares her intentions to “gobble [it] up” and starts to shake the tree this way and that until at last down from the tree falls…a hungry fox. No sooner does it land than it exclaims that it is going to gobble up the little mouse (as foxes do). The mouse scurries up the tree in fright, and the fox begins to shake it until down tumbles…a hungry warthog. And on the pattern goes, with frightened prey hiding in the tree and hungry predators giving it a shake only to dislodge a bigger, hungrier animal. The three co-authors have delivered a delightful narrative, full of comically narrow escapes, and Borando returns with her smooth styling and fresh, uncluttered spreads that bring visual humor and irony that hold right through till the final page. The book’s design requires readers to turn the book as the layout keeps shifting from vertical to horizontal, and while readers end up mimicking all the tree shaking in the narrative, the effect is a little wearing.
A charming workout. (Picture book. 3-7)