Awards, Honors, Prizes:
Reading Measurement Programs:
Janet Crane Barley (Children's Literature)
One morning when a child tickles his pet Mousie's chin, Mousie won't wake up. Daddy tells him that Mousie is dead. The child insists Mousie is just sleeping and will wake up soon. Daddy explains that dead is very different from sleeping. The child says he's angry at Mousie and tears follow his anger. Daddy comforts him and they talk about why Mousie died. Then they make plans to bury the little pet. Mommy gives the child a shoebox to bury Mousie in. He decides to tuck in a bit of food, a toy car, a crayon and toy ring so Mousie won't be bored, and a picture of himself so Mousie won't be lonely. He decorates the box by painting on bright wiggly stripes. Mommy digs a hole for the shoebox and lights two sparklers on the grave. The child cries a bit then tells Mousie that he is mad and sad and will miss him--a eulogy of sorts. After the funeral the child thinks about the fact the mouse is dead and maybe someday he will get another mouse. "But not just yet." This book effectively captures the experience of what happens when a loved one dies. The child goes through anger, denial, grief and acceptance and his parents gently help him understand and deal with what happened. This well-told story would be quite helpful when one needs to explain death to a child. 2001, Margaret K. McElderry Books/Simon & Schuster's Children's Publishing Division, $16.00. Ages 4 to 8.
CCBC (Cooperative Children's Book Center Choices, 2002)
When I woke up this morning, I tickled Mousie's tummy. But Mousie didn't wake up." A small boy's reaction to his pet mouse's death is handled with great sensitivity by his parents and with great skill by author Robie Harris. "I have something very sad to tell you," the boy's father says with his arm around the child. "Mouse is . . . dead." In this important and comforting story, the child expresses his anger, and then grief, with tears. But he also has other outlets as he prepares a box in which to bury Mousie, putting in some of his pet's favorite things, and then goes through the ritual of a burial. His confusion and fear about death are also touched upon. "Dead," says Daddy, "is very different from sleeping." Harris's text is an exemplary treatment of a difficult subject for children and adults alike. Jan Ormerod created her full-color, full-page art in black pencil lines with watercolor washes. CCBC categories: Understanding Oneself and Others; Picture Books for Younger Children. 2001, Margaret K. McElderry, 24 pages, $16.00. Ages 3-6.
Kirkus (Kirkus Reviews, July 1, 2001 (Vol. 69, No. 13))
A little boy's pet mouse dies, and he and his family cope, in this gently done true-life tale by a team that has such an elegant grasp of the workings of the minds and hearts of children. A little boy fiercely denies that his pet mouse is dead, despite his father's remonstrations, and then he gets mad at Mousie, and finally sad. The boy and his parents put Mousie in a box with some of his favorite things-carrots, a piece of jam toast, and a toy or two-and make a headstone for him out of driftwood. Readers can hear the boy working things out for himself, that Mousie won't ever come back, that grief and longing are what he feels. And in the last frame, where he plays with Mousie's wheel and a toy mouse while wearing his mouse slippers, he thinks about getting another mouse-"But not just yet." Ormerod makes her images from a close-up, child-high perspective, with a fresh, clean palette: her headshot of the child bawling wildly at the realization of the truth of Mousie's demise is touching and tender, as is the gentle comfort of his father. Not since "The Tenth Good Thing About Barney "(1971) has there been such an affecting and satisfying story about the death of a pet. 2001, McElderry, $16.00. Category: Picture book. Ages 4 to 8. © 2001 Kirkus Reviews/VNU eMedia, Inc. All rights reserved.
Publishers Weekly (Publishers Weekly)
Deborah Stevenson (The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books, October 2001 (Vol. 55, No. 2))
Many will guess right from the title that thereís a pet funeral in the offing, and that is indeed the sad outcome when a boyís beloved white mouse doesnít wake up one morning. Mousieís young owner succumbs to grief and anger, but his dadís explanations and his momís assistance with a burial plan help the boy understand and deal with his petís passing. Itís good to see a recognition that it hurts to lose small pets, too, and the text is bare-bones simple and calmly direct, covering a range of developmentally appropriate bereavement issues (including permanence--ďWhen I wake up tomorrow morning, Mousie wonít be hereĒ--and the possibility of succession--ďSo, maybe someday, Iíll get another mouseĒ). The book glides so smoothly through the steps, in fact, that the story is suspiciously tidy (whatís going to happen when the narrator misses the toy car heís burying with Mousie more than he misses Mousie?) and less involving than instructive (especially for baffled parents of young mourners); thereís little discussion of Mousieís life and ways, so the audience never really gets a sense of the narratorís loss as they do in, for instance, Viorstís The Tenth Good Thing about Barney. Ormerodís illustrations, especially the Mousie gallery on the endpapers (where Mousie is an inquisitive nose-twitching charmer), do their best to fill that gap: the protagonistís toy mouse and mouse-face slippers emphasize his involvement with his small friend, and the pictures treat Mousieís still form tastefully and with respect as heís swaddled lovingly in the narratorís old t-shirt awaiting his interment. Though itís overpowered by its purpose, that purpose will undoubtedly make it useful, especially when the preschool class pet goes the way of all mice. Review Code: Ad -- Additional book of acceptable quality for collections needing more material in the area. (c) Copyright 2001, The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois. 2001, McElderry, 26p, $16.00. Ages 3-6 yrs.
|Language||Call Number||LCCN||Dewey Decimal||ISBN/ISSN|
|English (eng)||PZ7.H2436 Go 2001