Library Mouse: Home Sweet Home by Daniel Kirk

I don't often review more than one, and usually the first, book in a series, but Daniel Kirk and his Library Mouse are a happy exception. Back in 2010 I reviewed Library Mouse: A World to Explore, the third book in the series, and took the opportunity to talk about all three books as well as Kirk's other books, many of which are favorites with my kids. Besides being a talented illustrator and author, Daniel Kirk is a songwriter and musician and happens to have created some kid's music I can actually stand to listen to, Go!, which has some classics and some great new songs (Ice Cream Truck is my favorite) that are all about transportation. And, his newest Library Mouse book, the fifth, is so wonderful that it deserves it's own review, especially since, like all the books in this series, it stands alone perfectly fine and is interesting and engaging on its own. If you have read the rest of the series, then I know you'll enjoy it even more!

Sam the Library Mouse loves reading and writing. His best friend Sarah loves exploring and having adventures. When the mice notice the books in the library that they live in are being boxed up, they do some exploring and discover that the library is undergoing a renovation. This leads them to a dictionary to learn what "renovation" means. Sarah sums it up by saying that it means that "the two of us will have to go exploring and find a new home." When the mice finally find a quiet place to call home, if only temporarily, they are faced with the challenge making the half-empty attic feel cozy. The two decide to each build a house, one for a library mouse and one for an explorer who has adventures. Of course, this means hitting the books. Sam decides that he wants a classical look and builds a house that could be found in ancient Rome. Sarah builds a yurt! But the houses just aren't quite right. Sam and Sarah hit the books again and end up building ten more houses before settling on just, and I mean JUST, the right house. You will love what Sarah comes up with! And, you'll also love what Sam and Sarah do with the reject houses once the library is open again. Best of all, Kirk includes an "About this Book" that has photographs of houses in the styles that Sam and Sarah worked in along with brief, kid-friendly details about the houses!

So many times a picture book character becomes a series franchise and the quality of the books takes a nose dive (you know who you are, picture book characters. . .) That is not the case by any means with Daniel Kirk and the Library Mouse series at all. Of course, I am probably biased because this is a series of books ABOUT books and I am the kind of person who believes that there is a book that can address any issue that comes up in life and Sam proves that, five times over now. But Kirk's series isn't just for book lovers. The story lines and characters in his books are infinitely appealing, even (as I have witnessed) to kids who have been reading chapter books on their own for years. I hope you and your family will take some time to sit down with Sam and see what I'm going on about!

Daniel Kirk and Library Mouse, singing songs about books, no doubt!


Source: Review Copy

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