Wednesday, April 15, 2009

The Church Mice are at it again...

Darn it -- the camera took a blury picture again. I'll have to fix it, but not today (we're in the midst of Easter vacation and much of my time is spent doing kid stuff this week. The retakes will have to wait for next week).

I only learned about the Church Mice series about three years ago when I picked up a paperback copy and sold it almost instantaneously. Hmmm...(I thought) what's so good about this book? It's not one I remember from my childhood. Granted, I didn't actually read lots of picture books when I was young. I started on chapter books fairly early on & never went back. I didn't find the picture books of much use at the time. Now, though, I have had that aha! moment regarding picture books & finally GET them.

The Church Mice series by Graham Oakley is one of thos Aha! series. Starting the series off, THE CHURCH MICE are two mice (named Arthur and Humphrey), along with a veritable host of other mice who live in a church in England, and who help a stray cat by the name of Sampson become a member of their group -- with the strict understanding that their friendship means that Sampson would never EAT any of the mice.

Currently, there are fourteen books in the series (The Church Mice was published in 1972 and the last so far, The Church Mice Take a Break, was published in 2000). Graham Oakley has written and illustrated several other books beside the Church Mouse series and has illustrated a host of other books for other authors over the years, but it is this whimsical series about adventurous mice that have become classics favorites.

If you haven't seen or read one, do so.

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