Tag Archives: animals

Mousequerade Ball, A Counting Tale













Mousequerade Ball, A Counting Tale

by Lori Mortensen, illustrated by Betsy Lewin
Bloomsbury, 2016

With perfect rhyme woven into a complete story, this book teaches counting skills under a dashing cloak of fun!  Award-winning Lori Mortensen and Betsy Lewin have another winner.

We follow the crowd to the Mousequerade Ball and meet the entire cast of tidy mice who clean the rooms, black-tied mice who strum their lutes, baker mice who prepare fluff puff crumbs and silly jesters that do amazing tricks.  UNTIL…a cat arrives.  Then we count down as splendid ladies scatter across the floor, buccaneers scramble out the door and mice dash into sacks and cracks.  UNTIL…they learn the cat came to dance!  A fun story set in an elegant castle, perfect for young princes and princesses.

Read more reviews on Amazon.

Out of the Woods, A True Story of an Unforgettable Event













Out of the Woods, A True Story of an Unforgettable Event

By Rebecca Bond
Margaret Ferguson Books, 2015

Based on a true story, a four-year-old boy lives with his mother in Ontario, Canada when, in 1914, something miraculous happens.

Antonio, one of a few children, lived in a tall hotel where lumberjacks, fisherman, trappers and miners made their home.  He was friends with everyone.  When not following the hotel workers doing their chores, he roamed the forests.  He rarely saw animals, for they knew to stay away from the dangers people brought to the forest.  Then, one day smoke appeared in the forest and a bell sounded.  The winds whipped the smoke and flames around and soon everyone headed for the lake.  Standing in the water up to their knees, their waist or their shoulders, the people watched the flames roar through the trees.  Then, the animals arrived and they, too, entered the water to watch the flames.  Rabbits stood next to foxes, raccoons next to bears and moose next to people.  They stood quietly next to each other for hours, maybe days, until the fire burned itself out.

The rich pen and ink drawings with smoky, muted watercolors highlight the era and the isolation of forest dwellers.  The story is so rare, the drawings are so animated and filled with minute details of 1914, that it is the kind of book that sends young minds into dreams and wonder of another world.

Read more reviews and purchase on Amazon.


Little Tricker the Squirrel Meets Big Double the Bear

Little Tricker the SquirrelLittle Tricker the Squirrel Meets Big Double the Bear
by Ken Kesey, illustrated by Barry Moser
Viking, 1990

A family favorite, we acted out this story, and I’ve seen it beautifully told by several storytellers. Set in the south, with a looong draaawl we meet a trickster squirrel who is rudely awakened by a bear’s “ROARRR!”, that shakes “the cottonwood from root to crown till a critter could hardly stand.” Bear threatens other animals, but none want anything to do with him, until Little Tricker decides to have some fun with him–and so the games begin! This story is probably too long for the television-raised young of today, but if you have a storyteller’s voice and want a good romp through a book, this could become a favorite.

The book is out of print, but you can find used copies on the internet and a few at local libraries.