Motor Mouse and friends are back for three new adventures in this irresistible second book in a series from the creators of Gooseberry Park and the Mr. Putter and Tabby books!
Motor Mouse is a busy little mouse, between playing a game of croquet, riding a fancy bus, and discovering mystery stories. Come along with him on his adventures!
In “A Good Game of Croquet,” Motor Mouse and his brother love playing croquet and they always play to win. That is, until Valentino starts watching Peaceful Planet and thinks it might be more peaceful if they played to lose. Motor Mouse thinks this is nonsense! It is always best to win…right?
In “Day of the Double Decker,” Motor Mouse gets in his car for a full day of deliveries, but the car won’t start! His friend Winston the mechanic says his car needs to be in the shop for a week! How will Motor Mouse make his deliveries on time? Then the double decker bus rolls by. Perhaps Motor Mouse can take the bus. It will be an adventure!
In “The Radio Mystery Book,” Motor Mouse loves reading everything, except mysteries. Mysteries keep him up at night and he can’t get into them during the day. So, he is excited when he discovers the Radio Mystery Show, where a host reads a mystery book aloud, one chapter a day. But after listening to the first chapter, Motor Mouse must know what happens! He rushes to the library, grabs the book from the shelf, and finds himself at a crossroads. Should he read the rest of the book all at once, or is it more fun to wait until tomorrow to hear the next chapter?
This sweet and funny trio of stories is sure to have young readers wanting to visit with Motor Mouse again and again.
Cynthia Rylant is the author of more than 100 books for young people, including the beloved Henry and Mudge, Annie and Snowball, Brownie & Pearl, Motor Mouse, and Mr. Putter & Tabby series. Her novel Missing May received the Newbery Medal. She lives in Portland, Oregon.
Arthur Howard is the illustrator of the Mr. Putter & Tabby series, Gooseberry Park series, and Motor Mouse series by Cynthia Rylant; Goatilocks and the Three Bears by Erica S. Perl; Noodle & Lou by Liz Garton Scanlon; and his own picture books. He has also coauthored and illustrated many books of humor for adults and appeared for seven seasons in the PBS math-oriented production Square One Television. He lives in New York City.
Publisher: Beach Lane Books (August 25, 2020)
Length: 64 pages
Grades: P - 3
Lexile ® 590L
The Lexile reading levels have been certified by the Lexile developer, MetaMetrics®
This murine essential worker returns in three small stories packed full of charm.
Everyone’s favorite delivery mouse returns after his the eponymous debut (2019) with tales as succinct as they are comforting. “The Radio Mystery Book” informs readers that Motor Mouse loves mysteries but doesn’t read them at bedtime because they keep him up at night. When a radio station starts playing an audio book, a chapter a day, he discovers there’s more than one way to enjoy a good book. “Day of the Double-Decker” begins with tragedy (a motorcar in need of repairs) and quickly turns around when our hero finds that his public transportation system is “full of kindness.” Finally, “A Good Game of Croquet” shows what happens when peaceful intentions wreak havoc with Motor Mouse’s regular croquet game with his brother Valentino. Conveyed with Rylant’s customary charisma, the tone of these tales retains its light touch with familiar characters and safe, comfortable settings. The art takes great pleasure in the smallest details, such as Valentino, natty in straw hat and spectator shoes, or, in another scene, a keen example of what would happen if Andy Warhol had ever painted chickens.
As comforting as a hot cup of tea, a scone, or the view from a double-decker bus on a beautiful sunny day. (Picture book. 5-8 )
– Kirkus Reviews, May 15, 2020
Motor Mouse, owner of the jaunty little red motorcar, returns with three more engaging short stories. In “The Radio Mystery Book” he becomes mesmerized by a mystery program on the radio and doesn’t think he can wait for the next installment. Should he drive to the library and read ahead to chapter two on his own? Spoiler alert: he waits. “There can be great joy in anticipation.” In the second story, “Day of the Double Decker,” his motorcar breaks down and he must make his customary deliveries via public transportation. Minor challenges ensue, but the adventure ends happily. “Though he knew he would miss his motorcar all week long, Motor Mouse knew that everything was going to be all right.” In the final story, “A Good Game of Croquet,” Motor Mouse’s competitive nature temporarily gets the better of him during a croquet match with his brother Valentino, but in the end brotherly love is restored and they both look forward to the next game. “Life was full.” Rylant’s stories are just the right mix of child-sized adventure and philosophical musings; and Howard’s cartoony mixed-media illustrations are full of humor, action, and personality.
– The Horn Book Magazine, July/August 2020
Awards and Honors
Bank Street Best Children's Book of the Year Selection Title