Some of the smallest books designed for young readers can be real gems. Happy Mouse Day is a favourite of mine. The perfect read aloud for Grade 1 or 2 and today I found a brand new copy. My school copy is from the Corgi Pups series but this new one is a Colour First Reader from Random House. It seems they have taken about 8 of the Corgi Pup titles and reissued them with bright colour illustrations and a large font. Oddly I could not find a full list of these new editions apart from those illustrated on the back cover of Happy Mouse Day.
Pete wants a mouse – he is desperate but his mum says you will never have a mouse in this house. Pete is thinking about these words while he is up in his tree house one Saturday. For Pete Saturday is mouse day. Each Saturday he asks his parents again if he can please have a mouse and as always they say no. Then Pete has a revelation. He is not allowed to have a mouse in that house but what about in this house in his tree house?
Pete enlists the help of his friend and after school they go to the local pet store and Pete buys the mouse of his dreams – a PEW – a pink eyed white.
He manages to keep his mouse a secret from his mum and he even builds her the most splendid mouse house. Pete has a terrific little book which he uses for reference – “Mice and how to keep them”. There are a few close shaves but it all seems to be going very well until one very stormy night the tree with the tree house is struck by lightning and it seems little Nice (that is the name of the mouse) is dead! You might like to think how a mouse might come to be called 'Nice'.
Dick King Smith is of course a master story teller so you are in very safe hands. The ending will make you smile and smile. I adore sharing this little book with children in my library. Go and look for it today – this is a heart-warming story which is sure to be enjoyed by children and adults alike.