Aug 7, 2008

Mice

by Rebecca Sjonger and Bobbie Kalman

The second book I read to my daughter about small pets. It is written for ages 6-12, but she found it quite comprehensible broken down in three shorter readings with lots of discussion. Mice gives easily understood info on the pet house mouse and its care. Especially helpful are a few short lists of questions to help you decide if a mouse pet is right for you. I have decided mice are not for us. Mainly because mice are nocturnal- they sleep all day, and may be provoked to bite if startled awake. Also because you cannot let a pet mouse run around loose to play- our old house has too many small holes and crannies, exposed electric cords, and two cats! I can just picture the first time she would try to hold her pet, it jumping down and disappearing fast. Or getting eaten. Our cats are very good mousers.

My daughter is not convinced. When throughout the book I pointed out to her various reasons a mouse might not be the best pet she always had a quick response. When I told her the mouse sleeps all day so she won't have much time to play with it she said "I'll just wake him up!" I said what if Daddy's allergic? and she replied "We'll keep the mousie in the mudroom. Daddy never goes in there." Then we tried to think of a safe place to keep a mouse away from our cats, and she got more creative. Her suggestions were: shut up in a dresser drawer, inside my jewelry box, on top of the curtain rod, under daddy's pillow, or inside the furnace! What a three-year-old will think of!

I have only one criticism of the book and that is the illustrations. Most are nice photographs, but there are a few drawings, and they're terrible. One page of drawings is used to show how mice communicate with body language, but my daughter assumed it was telling you about mice that are old, sick and have fleas, because they all look so poorly!

Rating: 3/5                      32 pages, 2004

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