Walsh brings back her trademark mice for another concept book (Balancing Act, 2010, etc.).
Jumper has disappeared. His mice friends look inside and outside a cave, below the fallen tree and up among the branches, and even down in Mole’s tunnel. No Jumper! Is he playing hide-and-seek, or has a sneaky weasel got him? Wait, something moved underneath the leaves…and out pops their friend. The book has two levels: one is an engaging mouse story about friendship, and the other is a simple grammar tutorial that incorporates prepositions into the story. As the five mice scurry about, the descriptions of their actions are carefully composed of prepositions. Preschoolers won’t care about parts of speech; they’ll simply enjoy the mice adventure. However, language teachers will find this a clever device and a springboard for kids to craft their own stories using prepositions. Walsh’s familiar collage artwork keeps the tale, like her character, jumping. Children will enjoy spotting bits of Jumper concealed by rocks and leaves on their second and third trips through the book.
Walsh has a knack for creating illustrations and text that seem ever so simple yet have plenty of acumen, emotion, and pure fun. More mice, please. (Picture book. 4-8)