The Mouse and the House
by Mikey Thomas
Trafford Publishing 

"Tom always listened to what his mom said. Until this one night while he laid in bed."

Escaping death at the clutches of frightening beast, avoiding the tow of a deadly whirlpool, and successfully dodging a menacing contraption are the travails Tom the mouse faces in The Mouse and the House by Mikey Thomas. The book is a delightful little read about how one's disobedience can lead you into trouble. Tom, a child mouse and the protagonist, is a charming and adventurous child who pays no attention to his mother's warnings of not straying from the family's home in the field to "the house" where trouble lurks. But, as children will, Tom ignores his mother and decides to go to the house anyway. There he survives several near-death experiences that make him a wiser little mouse in the end.

Written in traditional couplets, Thomas's rhyme scheme is classic. The swing and the sway of the language simulates the gentleness of being rocked to sleep. The rhythm of the language is that of a lullaby, yet the story's content belies its poetry as the action is quick-paced and exhilarating. The drawings complement the words, adding dimension and depth by illustrating Tom's tribulations and the emotion between Tom and his mother. The pages of the picture book itself are made to resemble a notepad with rough, crayon-colored sketches and text superimposed onto the pages of the pad. Faux white masking on the top corners of the paper appear to hold the artwork and the manuscript together, as if it were a child's project of sorts, which adds to the book's charisma.

A cautionary ditty about listening to your parents and not straying far from the familiar, The Mouse and the House is a bedtime book that parents and kids will surely love. Despite being the author's first book, Thomas' writing is enjoyable and he is an author to consider.

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