A white-coated mouse opens his barn-cum-office daily to a variety of equally anthropomorphic animals—all of whom benefit from the good doctor’s unconventional methods.
On the first verso, readers see the diminutive doctor pushing open the doors of his large red barn while the text on the stark-white recto explains his routine, which includes hanging his sign: “Consultations from sunrise to sunset.” He then seats himself on three cushions piled up on a chair and begins munching his breakfast cheese. Despite the annoyed clucks of his first patient—Ms. Chicken—Dr. Mouse insists on waiting for his visitor chairs to fill up before beginning examinations. The strategy is clearly successful; Dr. Mouse facilitates healing, whether medical or psychological, for each animal—and each therapy conveniently comes from another patient. (Mr. Fox, who enters late, denies an illness but acquires a needed snack—not, happily, a fellow patient—and just happens to have spectacles in his backpack for Ms. Owl.) The comedy lies in the detailed, cheerful, and painterly illustrations as well as the funny, often surprising, conversations. Even the youngest readers will giggle at the diet of Mr. Bear, whose complaint is a hurting stomach: cream cake for breakfast, lunch, and supper. His cure will come from Ms. Rabbit, and he in turn sweetly outlines a plan to help her overcome shyness. The ending is a funny revelation.
Charming, upbeat quirkiness. (Picture book. 3-7)