Mouseling’s family lives in a nest filled with words gleaned from restaurant menus, labels, signs, and packaging.
This little mouse narrator feels safe there, whispering and touching the words. When all the rest of the brood leaves to go out in the wide world, Mouseling just wants to stay, until wise Aunt Tillie tells of all the new words that might be found outside the nest. With a few supplies and a map indicating the way home and a warning about cats, Mouseling sets off on an adventure, entering a quiet building with “stacks and rows of blocky things.” Young readers will gleefully know that those things are books in a library. There, Mouseling finds wonderful new words to savor and with which to augment the nest. The not-so-fearsome cat that lives in this wondrous place introduces the little protagonist to books, and, in return, little Mouseling reads to him. O’Rourke’s bright, digital cartoons depict the action with a light touch, presenting Mouseling’s precious words as standout banners. Crum’s name for this young mouse is cleverly inventive, and her narrator is as clever as it is. The tale is well-paced with just the right amount of gentle adventure to appeal to young humans discovering the world of words and books for themselves.
Encouraging, lovely words. (Picture book. 3-6)