Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Book Review - The Church Mice Series

Today, I'm briefly reviewing a set of children's books that we discovered at our local library, The Church Mice series by Graham Oakley.

The tale is about a vegetarian cat  and the resident mice that inhabit a church in a small English village.  A few of the mice have attitudes coupled with a great sense of entitlement.  The tolerant cat is often coerced.  These are great stories to read with the kids. 

The English author and illustrator, Graham Oakley, born August 27, 1929, is best known for The Church Mice series, from 1970 to 2000.  There are 12 books in this series with beautiful detailed art work in each book.

The Church Mice Adrift and The Church Mice in Action were 'Highly Commended' runners up for the 1976 and 1982 Kate Greenaway Medals from the Library Association.  We purchased these two titles at a library sale.  A short mini-review  of these titles follows.

UPDATE:  Photo now uploaded. Storage problem fixed.

The Church Mice series by Graham Oakley, photo by DG Hudson

The Church Mice Adrift

A tale of how the church mice and Sampson lure the larger rats out of their cozy home in the church, so the mice can move back in.  A Rataurant was their ingenious idea, the rats thought so, too.  Only one problem had to be solved - two mice had to remain with the rataurant to serve the rat clientele.  Samson, the church cat, is their only hope for escape when all the food is gone.

The Church Mice in Action

When the parson's sister visits, Samson becomes a contender in the world of cat shows.  The church mice see an opportunity to raise money for a roof repair, and to that end, Samson goes through with the humiliation of a cat pageant.  The mice do what they do best, and try to turn the odds in their favor. 


Are you familiar with Graham Oakley's stories or his illustrations?  Do you have a cat, vegetarian or normal? Please share in the comments.



http://www.grahamoakley.co.uk/  Home page, Graham Oakley

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Graham_Oakley  Author info and a list of books

Sample of what the book looks like