Of Mice and Readers

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Kid Lit Blog Hop
Several of children’s literature’s best works feature mischievous and loving mice as the main characters.  From Stuart Little to Angelina, children have delighted in these furry and funny mice adventures. The characteristics of mice have been found in literature for many years, and I’ve always been fascinated with how we love literary mice, but sometimes not as much in our own kitchens.  Mice, for children, must resonate with them for their small physical stature, their vulnerability as well as their natural curiosity.  Leave your thoughts on the use of mice in literature in the comments!


Poppy by Avi

A female mouse named Poppy travels through Dimwood Forest to save her family from starvation and avoiding the great horned owl, Mr. Ocax. The beginning of Avi’s series, this book pure adventure following Poppy!

Anatole by Eve Titus

Anatole is a French mouse with a superb cheese palate and soon becomes the mysterious taster behind Duvall Cheese Factory’s success!

The Ralph Mouse Collection by Beverly Cleary

Cleary’s Ralph S. Mouse is one of my favorite literary characters.  I can picture him zooming around on his little motorcycle and all of his escapades.  Every child should read about Ralph!

Stuart Little by E.B. White

Simply put, a book that should be on every bookshelf.  This is a story, for me, that defines the beauty of children’s literature

Stuart Little is no ordinary mouse. Born to a family of humans, he lives in New York City with his parents, his older brother George, and Snowbell the cat. Though he’s shy and thoughtful, he’s also a true lover of adventure.

The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo

DiCamillo is an enchanting writer, and this story delights children with a Princess named Pea, a servant named Miggery Sow, and a rat named Roscuro.  The adventures involved a dark dungeon and a beautiful castle! I’ve met so many children who have loved it – a great addition for any bookshelf.

Redwall by Brian Jacques

Redwall Abbey, tranquil home to a community of peace-loving mice is threatened by Cluny the Scourge – the evil-one-eyed rat warlord – and his battle-hardened horde of predators. Cluny is certain that Redwall will fall easily to his fearsome army but he hasn’t bargained for the courage and strength of the combined forces of the Redwall mice and their loyal woodland friends.

Abel’s Island by William Steig

A quiet, Newbery Honor winning book about a mouse stranded on an island and his adventure getting back to his home.  This is a delightful narrative with great illustrations, for any child!

Angelina Ballerina by Katharine Holabird

An adorable, and famous, picture book about a determined little mouse who wants to dance! Delightful for young children.

Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH by Robert C. O’Brien

Mrs. Frisby, a widowed mouse with four small children, must move her family to their summer quarters immediately, or face almost certain death. But her youngest son, Timothy, lies ill with pneumonia and must not be moved. Fortunately, she encounters the rats of NIMH, an extraordinary breed of highly intelligent creatures, who come up with a brilliant solution to her dilemma.

If You Give A Mouse A Cookie by Laura Numeroff

The consequences of giving a cookie to this energetic mouse run the young host ragged, but young readers will come away smiling at the antics that tumble like dominoes through the pages of this delightful picture book.

Bless This Mouse by Lois Lowry

A resilient and quirky colony of church mice fears another Great X more than they fear cats. Under Mouse Mistress Hildegarde’s leadership, they save themselves from one danger after another—sometimes just by the skin of their tails! Can one ultimate act of bravery during the feast day of St. Francis get Father Murphy to bless these mice and keep them safe forever? Rife with humor and personality, this young middle-grade novel has an old-fashioned feel with the makings of a modern classic.

Tumtum & Nutmeg: Adventures Beyond Nutmouse Hallby Emily Bearn

Tumtum and Nutmeg have a wonderful life but the children who live in Rose Cottage, Arthur and Lucy, are miserable. So, one day,Tumtum and Nutmeg decide to cheer them up.

This book, while perhaps not as well known as the others, is one of my all time favorite children’s books.  The characters are darling, the setting is easy to fall into, and the book flows easily for the reader. Look for a longer review here Tales of Bookworm in a few weeks!

Tell us – what are your favorite MOUSE books? Any we should add to the list?



  1. Great list! I definitely have read and loved many of those (some others are new to me; I never did Angelina as she postdates my childhood by a generation or two, and my boys weren’t interested 😀 But Redwall–great books!

  2. Wow, that’s a lot of mice! Excellent list. I’m always looking for something to hold my twin boys’ attention, and it is NOT EASY! I’m not sure a mouse would do it for them unless he had superpowers. But Ralph Mouse has a motorcycle, so that might work! 🙂

  3. Great list! There are definitely some of our favorites on it and some I’ve never seen before. There is one that does come to mind. Mouse’s First Spring by Lauren Thompson (of Little Quack fame). Thanks for sharing your list in the Kid Lit Blog Hop! 🙂

  4. My favorite is the Mrs. Frisby!

    Not famous, but another classical mouse I love is Johnny Mouse. He was a cartoon character created by Johnny Gruelle who also created Raggedy Ann and Andy. At one time Johnny Mouse cartoons were as famous as Raggedy Ann cartoons. Gruelle published one book about Johnny Mouse based on the cartoons. (Full discloure: I publish old Gruelle books on Kindle.)

  5. Ben and me- Ben Franklin has a mouse friend . It’s been years but another one to add .

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