The Mouse Who Wasn’t Scared
From the cover illustration of Little Mouse clad in stripy boots, gloves and tail warmer, we know we’re in for a treat with Petr Horàček’s latest picture book.
Despite her size, Little Mouse is a fearless creature. That, at least, is what she assures Rabbit in response to his warning about the woods being full of large scary animals.
Off she goes to explore.
Deep in the woods she comes upon something large and grey under the branches of a tree …
and this is what she says, “You don’t scare me … Do you want to play?”
Receiving no response from the wolf, Little Mouse continues on her way.
In the shadows sits a very large bear, which Little Mouse addresses in similar fashion. Again no reply is forthcoming.
The moose also remains silent in response to her invitation to play,
so Little Mouse proceeds cheerily and confidently onwards until she spies a little house.
The creature waiting behind the door certainly isn’t big and is more than willing to play with Little Mouse; but …
By means of the textual pattern and atmospheric mixed media illustrations, Horàček builds tension slowly, controlling the pacing perfectly until Little Mouse reaches the house.
When readers turn the cut-down page to open the cottage door, they’re already eagerly anticipating something unexpected though perhaps not what is revealed waiting within.
A great read aloud be that with a nursery group or with individuals.