Saturday was the day my dad drove into town to run errands. Saturday was also the day my sister and I climbed into the car to join him. Just the three of us. First, we’d head over to Lang’s News Depot, in the town square, to buy a newspaper. A group of regulars always sat along the counter, drinking coffee and chatting with the owner. From there, Dad took us to the bakery where I faithfully pointed to the bismarcks and savored every blessed mouthful of the sweet doughnut and divine raspberry filling. Next, we’d head to the hardware store where Dad reminded me of a little boy in a candy store. All of those marvelous nuts and bolts and screws and gizmos!
The second to the last stop was always the library. I still remember the feeling of awe, looking out at the vast sea of books and the sound of my wooden chair, squealing across the tiles when I pulled it out to spend time with a book. I can also hear the infrequent “Shhhhhhh.” from the librarian when people spoke above a hush. I chose my books for the week and carried them back out to the car. I’d already read the first pages and couldn’t wait to see if Charlie would find the last golden ticket or if Meg and her little brother, Charles Wallace, would ever locate their father, but we still had one more stop to make before we headed for home…
If you love reading, you already have something in common with the characters in the book I’m sharing with you today.
Title – Library Mouse – A Friend’s Tale
Written and illustrated by – Daniel Kirk
Published – Scholastic – 2009
Suitable for ages – 4 to 8.
Topics – Reading, writing, and friendship
Opening – Sam was a library mouse. He lived in a little hole in the wall behind the children’s reference books. Sam loved to read, and he loved to write, too. Everyone loved his little books. But Sam was very shy, and no one at the library had ever met him.
Amazon Review – View it HERE. Celebrated writer and illustrator Daniel Kirk brings to life the joys of reading, writing, and sharing in this all-new Library Mouse adventure. Sam the library mouse loves to write, and the children love his little books, which he leaves on the library shelves for them to find. But no one at the library has ever met him. When Tom can’t find a partner for a book-making assignment and finds Sam’s secret hole behind the children’s reference section, will the pair be able to work together, or will Sam’s secret identity be spoiled forever? A heartwarming tale about collaboration and creative ambitions, this book will enchant any young aspiring author or illustrator.
Why do I like this book? I grew up with books, and I don’t mean a pile on the coffee table and one in the bathroom. My father built bookcases to hold many books with deep shelves that concealed extra rows of books. Yes, I would pull a book off of the shelf and find another behind it, and another behind that one. The book, Library Mouse, shares a similar love for books by the school librarian, a mysterious author named Sam, and a little boy named Tom. When small, handmade books appear in the library, Tom decides to discover the true identity of the mysterious author. What he finds is (spoiler alert, I’m about to reveal the author.) a mouse. Yes! A mouse who writes books. I think that’s pretty amazing! In time, Tom’s discovery of Sam grows into a rare and precious friendship that truly touched this book reviewer’s heart.
Learn more about Daniel Kirk HERE.
And what was the last stop my dad made on Saturday?
Every Saturday, my dad visited a florist on the way home. He always took his time to look at every bouquet, always choosing the most beautiful one to bring home to my mom. He never missed a Saturday in over thirty years.
I invite you to visit me next week for The Monday Poems.
P.S. If you have a fond memory of the library or a favorite book you read as a child, I hope you’ll share it with me in the comments.