Library Mouse: A Friend's Tale
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Library Mouse: A Friend's Tale

by Daniel Kirk

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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…  See more details below


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.

F&P level: L

F&P genre: F

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Ken Marantz
Sam, a library mouse, lives in a hole behind the children's reference books. This charming fellow, who dresses in shirt and pants and sleeps in pajamas, really enjoys his life there, sleeping during the busy days and relishing every kind of book at night. After filling his mind with both facts and imaginary wonders, he decides to write his own book. He works hard to finish Squeak! A Mouse's Life; then he places it on the shelf, in the Biography section of course. His next opus, The Lonely Cheese, goes with the picture books. The children and librarians notice his books and begin to read them. They wonder who the mysterious author is and decide to invite him for Author Day. Instead, too shy to appear himself, Sam inspires his fans to write a book of their own. Our hero is introduced on the front cover, sword in hand, standing atop a cat's face on a book, his foot on a pencil. The back and title page have him kneeling between books, hushing finger to mouth. Naturalistic vignettes and full-page scenes show Sam at work or imagining, as well as an active library. The titles of the books around him add to the fun.
Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
Sam, the perky creative mouse hero of Library Mouse, returns. The Writers and Illustrators Club's next project at the library is to be a joint one. Each author is to collaborate with an illustrator. Mrs. Forrester, the librarian, offers to work with young Tom, who has no ideas. One night, busy researching his next story, Sam falls asleep. He must hide when the children start arriving, and he leaves his notebook behind. Tom finds it. Suspicious, the boy follows inky footprints to Sam's mouse hole and realizes that the mysterious author must be a mouse. When Tom leaves cheese and a cracker for him, Sam hopes that the boy will forget about him. Instead, Tom is inspired to write a story about shy Sam. He leaves the story by the mouse hole, and Sam surprises Tom by illustrating it. Together, they keep the secret of Sam's identity. Kirk's crisp, detailed illustrations create distinct personalities in the anthropomorphic mouse and the small cast of humans. The attractive library is replete with books on shelves, book carts, tables, and more. Sam is introduced on the cover, pencil at the ready. Kirk includes a note emphasizing the cooperative teamwork of picture book authors and illustrators. Throughout the book, he shows a multitude of favorite books created by such teams. It's fun to see how many you can spot. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal

K-Gr 2

Library Mouse (Abrams, 2007) introduced shy, library-dwelling Sam, who writes and illustrates books that he leaves for Mrs. Forrester and the children to read. This pleasant sequel features a bashful boy named Tom, who is a member of the Writers and Illustrators Club. He discovers that the mysterious author is a mouse and leaves him treats in an effort to make friends. Sam is able to bypass the cheese and crackers, but when he finds the story Tom wrote, he cannot resist. When the club meets again, Mrs. Forrester finds a new book written by Tom and illustrated by Sam, featuring two friends drawn as mice. When asked to identify his collaborator, Tom keeps his new friend's secret. Kirk's anthropomorphic mouse lives in a realistic-looking library, and his drawings of the librarian and children are incredibly lifelike. Tom's facial expressions and body language aptly convey his shyness and concern about Sam. The illustrations alternate between full-bleed drawings and spotlight cameos, and the perspective changes to show the story from of the points of view of the two main characters. This charming selection deserves a place in most collections.-Martha Simpson, Stratford Library Association, CT

Kirkus Reviews
Mouse becomes muse. Late at night when the library is closed, Sam the mouse, an enthusiastic reader and writer, sneaks out of his comfy hole to take advantage of the library's resources, leaving the books he writes behind. One morning, Sam works all night and falls asleep at a table, waking up just in time to avoid an elementary-school writing club. In his haste to escape, however, he leaves behind his notebook. Young Tom discovers it and takes it to the librarian, who suggests he leave it for Sam to find later. Tom has another idea, deciding to find Sam. He leaves cheese and a story he's written called "The Shy One" by Sam's mousehole. In no time flat, the duo is collaborating, with Sam doing the illustrations. And Tom's text gives Sam an idea for another book. Kirk's substantial text suits early grades. While his illustrations hold little artistic nuance, they do incorporate well-known titles by other author-illustrator duos, and children will enjoy spotting such favorites as Goodnight Moon and Miss Nelson Is Back. In all, a solid nudge to budding writers. (Picture book. 6-9)

Product Details

Abrams, Harry N., Inc.
Publication date:
Library Mouse Series, #2
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
8.50(w) x 10.60(h) x 0.60(d)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

Meet the Author

Daniel Kirk has illustrated a number of books for children. Library Mouse was given a starred review by Booklist magazine, which called it “a show-stopper.” Daniel lives in Glen Ridge, New Jersey, with his wife and three children. For more information about him, visit his Web site:

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