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THE SCHOOL MOUSE by Dick King-Smith Kirkus Star


by Dick King-Smith & illustrated by Cynthia Fisher

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1995
ISBN: 0-7868-0036-4
Publisher: Hyperion

As usual, King-Smith (Harriet's Hare, 1995, etc.) gives readers a children's book that's everything it should be. Written in a warm voice that makes jokes sound like explanations, and with a sense of adventure so infectious that readers will follow the plot wherever it leads, this is a grand piece of entertainment. Flora, who lives with her family in a schoolhouse, learns to read with the kindergartners. In a string of novelistic episodes she takes her first steps toward literacy; when an exterminator leaves poison all over the school, Flora saves her parents because she can read the label. She also protects their future when she teaches them not to leave their droppings about. A family drama, romance, comic characterizations, philosophical speculations on the subject of education—it all adds up to a very happy ending. Fisher's pointed black-and-white illustrations are perfectly pitched to the sharp text. (Fiction. 7-10)