Little sisters can be annoying, but would you really like them to disappear?
Little Monty the mouse likes to read, and paint, and pretend to be a dragon. And everything he does, his sister Milli does, too! She even imitates his fearsome dragon roar. Monty's latest interest is magic, and he patiently explains to Milli that his new magic set "is meant just for one." But Milli wants to play, too. Unfortunately, she makes a mess of Monty's vanishing trick, then rips his instruction manual when she tries to master a card trick. Monty screams that he wishes she'd turn into a warty toad and disappear. Milli runs away in tears. For the rest of the day, Monty practices by himself, and it's fun... for a while. But he gets worried when Milli's not at the dinner table; did his wish really turn her into a toad?! Monty starts to cry, then Milli pops up out of her hiding place at just the right moment for a sibling reconciliation and a collaborative attempt at magic. The book's final two-page spread delivers a rollicking (and embossed) surprise. Corderoy's lesson is solid, but the story scrimps on the crucial middle. Warnes' friendly mice nicely pitch the story to a younger audience, and they have a gently astringent feel missing from much of his often-sentimental work.
Cute but slight. (Picture book. 3-5)