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by Frank Asch, illustrated by Devin Asch

Age Range: 5 - 8

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2007
ISBN: 978-1-55453-022-9
Publisher: Kids Can

Following on the tail of Mr. Maxwell’s Mouse (2004), this father-son team spins another cat-and-mouse gambit set in Edwardian times. When Mrs. Eleanor Marlowe (a quite refined cat) returns home from her job at the Purrington Street Library one day, her busybody neighbor invites her to tea and tuna tarts but complains that her invitation is never returned. Mrs. Marlowe’s protest that she’s a dreadful housekeeper is just an excuse as her apartment is fastidiously clean and neat—due to the large family of mice that lives with her. When Lieutenant Manx and Sergeant Baxter from the Department of Catland Security show up at her door to investigate a neighbor’s complaint that she’s a mouse-keeper, Mrs. Marlowe has to think quickly to cover up any telltale tracks and foil the law. The ending, though a bit abrupt with Mrs. Marlowe reading a story to the mice, leaves the door open for more tales. The captivating, vintage-looking artwork, rendered in Adobe Photoshop and Corel Painter, assimilates unusual perspectives to add to the intrigue with details that enhance the narrative puns with visual ones. Not quite as charmingly macabre as their first book but entertaining nonetheless. (Picture book. 5-8)