My Dog Mouse by Eva Lindstrom. Pub. Gecko Press, 2017.
If you have ever been able to count the number of teeth in a dogs mouth while it yawns then you are probably dealing with an old dog. Mouse is an old dog with thin droopy ears who is a little over weight and moves real slow.
The little girl with the androgynous hairstyle loves the old dog and always asks the owner if she can take him for a walk.
Wearing her flared green dress with black tights and her back pack she takes Mouse for a walk around the block, through the park, right turn and home again.
They both love it and are clearly comfortable together. This is the way it should be.
“I wish Mouse was mine” the little girl says after dropping him off. The last page will put a lump in your throat. Don’t miss this one. Great for studying pets and reading aloud to juniors.
The illustrations are laid back. Easy autumnal water colours accompanied with pencil etchings. The illustrations also make social commentary – the supermarket trolley left behind, the cigarette butts on the ground outside for smokers.
There is no need to say this is another brilliant book for children and will sell millions because it is and it will.
Like the others it is bizaare, funny, simple to read, with identifiable heroes and villains and a socially insightful look at the care for the aged.
Jack loves his grandpa but his dementia is becoming a problem. Grandpa still thinks he is fighting the Battle of Britain in his spitfire and the nazis are still after him. In a way he is correct. Grandpa escapes his digs wanders for days like an escaped prisoner then causes damage to the planes in the War Museum.
Jack pleads for his parents to have grandpa at home, they consent but he escapes again, attracts the attention of the police and is put into Twilight Towers a home for the elderly.
The home is run by Miss Swine and a couple of nurses named Daisy and Blossom who have Love/Hate on their knuckles and spiderweb tattoos on their necks. Grandpa and all the other inmates are confined by keeping them doped to the eyeballs.
Jack and grandpa plot an escape similar to the one from Colditz Castle.
The Last days of summer by Valerie Hobbs. Pub. Francis Foster Books, 2010.
Lucy and her friend Megan are going to be in seventh grade after the summer break. Megan tells her how it is important to be popular in the new school year because being popular changes your life. But what makes you popular?
Over the summer Lucy, or Luz as she wants to be called, spends the summer at a cabin by a lake, with her grandmother. Grams, as she is called, is aware that she is starting to forget things and this summer with Lucy changes everything for both of them.
Into both Lucy and Grams lives comes the character of Eddie, a Down’s Syndrome boy, who will also be going to the same school as Lucy and Megan. At first Lucy resents her association with Eddie, but after Eddie makes his way to the the cabin where Lucy is spending time with her Grams, this too changes.
I love the honesty of this story. Grams is asked about mistakes in her life by Lucy to which she replies “I made lots of mistakes. By the time I had figured it all out, I was old”. Grams is a mine of wisdom and the interaction between her and young Luz is outstanding eg “first kisses are seldom good” and It is better to be yourself than popular. Lucy listens and learns.
Home spun philosophy at it’s best.
Suitable for school years Five to eight. I enjoyed it and so will you.