But I will say this, the third book in this series has just as much charm, heart, and feeling as the last two. It's adventurous and animated, with deep hues of color that transcend Bruce's mood and demeanor, while revealing lots of action and scenery. The characters are so much fun that I feel like I could watch them in a TV series. As a mom, I relate to Bruce. Even though my kids are teens now, the messes never stop. Instead of toys, it's clothes and shoes and papers all over the place. As soon as I wipe chunky fingerprints off the refrigerator handle, they are back as soon as I turn around. To have a parent relate to the conflict is a plus, but will the kids relate? With mischievous little mice who love to play and make us laugh, that's a resounding yes. They create newspaper/cardboard castles and whoops...draw pictures on the wall! They even get the geese to snorkel and have upbeat, positive spirits that see the best in every situation.
In a few words, this is a super fun read. Writers will find a traditional story arc modeled, with a clear problem and three failed attempts to get rid of it. A fourth escalating attempt to resolve the crisis works, but has an unexpected layered problem and a surprise thrown in at the end. Additional mentor text shout-outs go to... (drum roll, please)
...Great page turns! Especially after Bruce meets his neighbors. When you think everything will work out and it starts to go in another direction, great page turns are the result.
...Emotion! The grumpiness, the sarcastic expressions, and unexpected loneliness are driving forces that give this story heart.
...Art surprises! You MUST look under the jacket! Expression that will make you laugh out loud and a license plate that could very easily be mine.
...End papers! I love that we get to have the directions for frying-pan ball (By Nibbs) and a recipe for Grammie Tootie's Applesauce.
A home can be chaotic. A home can be messy. A home can be noisy. But a home is home.
What are some wanna-forget-em-but-gotta-have-em features about your home? Or how about other mentor texts that feature chaotic settings?