The Revenge of Randal Reese-Rat

Overview

Sequel to A Rat's Tale.

In A Rat's Tale, Montague Mad-Rat saved the day for the wharf rats of New York City and won the affection of the she-rat of his dreams, the lovely Isabel Moberly-Rat. All ratdom hailed Montague as a hero -- except for the rat whose story is at the center of this captivating sequel. A rodent of impeccable breeding and exquisite personal hygiene, Randal Reese-Rat is mad with jealousy, believing Montague has stolen his ...
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Overview

Sequel to A Rat's Tale.

In A Rat's Tale, Montague Mad-Rat saved the day for the wharf rats of New York City and won the affection of the she-rat of his dreams, the lovely Isabel Moberly-Rat. All ratdom hailed Montague as a hero -- except for the rat whose story is at the center of this captivating sequel. A rodent of impeccable breeding and exquisite personal hygiene, Randal Reese-Rat is mad with jealousy, believing Montague has stolen his former bride-to-be. His jealousy is no secret on his wharf, and when an unthinkable crime is perpetrated against Izzy and Monty on their wedding night, Randal is the prime suspect. Now on the lam, with a price on his head and thugs on his tail, Randal involves secret friends of his in a perfect and horrible revenge on the whole rat colony, Izzy and Monty included. But his plans are hopelessly complicated when a new rat enters his life, an exotic she-rat who also happens to be the cousin of his nemesis, Montague.

Musical Maggie Mad-Rat leaves her home in Africa to attend her cousin Montague's wedding in New York City, where she meets family and makes new friends, including the unique Randal Reese-Rat.

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Editorial Reviews

New York Times Book Review
Tor Seidler has created a rat to stand alongside Stuart Little.
Publishers Weekly
Fans of A Rat's Tale may be disappointed in this sequel, which focuses less on Montague Mad-Rat and his eccentric family and more on his rival for Isabel Moberly-Rat's hand, Randal Reese-Rat. The story opens in Africa, where Aunt Elizabeth has traveled to bring her daughter, Maggie, to New York City for the wedding of her cousin, Montague. Monty became a hero in the inaugural novel when his hand-painted seashells fetched a handsome sum, large enough to save the rodent community's wharf. On the wedding night of Monty and his fetching bride, Isabel, an arsonist sets a fire in their home and Randal Reese-Rat is the chief suspect. A "citywide rathunt" ensues, and the jealous (and, as it turns out, innocent) Randal seeks revenge on the rat community that has turned against him. Seidler plants clues to another potential romance as well as the identity of the true arsonist along the way. Though the author's talent for moving fluidly from one character's perspective to another is as evident as ever, the chronological flow is not as smooth here as in its predecessor (the narrative often backpedals to fill in gaps between episodes). And Helquist's drawings, while paying homage to the late Marcellino's earlier portraits of the characters, do not possess their polish or panache. Maggie's comment, as she heads back to Africa, that she felt "she was leaving something of herself behind" hints at a return visit. Ages 8-up. (Sept.) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Children's Literature
These quirky anthropomorphic rodents, introduced in A Rat's Tale, return for more misadventures in this sequel. Montague, a heroic rat who paints seashells, and Isabel, from a long line of aristocratic wharf rats, have their hearts set on marrying. But before they can twine their tails and set up a happy home, Aunt Elizabeth must fetch her daughter, Maggie, from Africa, and escort her to the wedding in New York City. Even among rats, however, love is never simple. Randal Reese-Rat, Isabel's former flame, has his whiskers out of place over the betrothal, and he is out for vengeance. When the newlyweds' honeymoon crate burns down, suspicion naturally falls upon Randal. Nice illustrations help the reader to conceptualize just how the rats are accomplishing these feats of wonder. After various narrowly averted disasters, misunderstandings are cleared up and all is well once again in the land of rats. 2001, Farrar Straus Giroux, $16.00. Ages 8 to 12. Reviewer: Christopher Moning
School Library Journal
Gr 4-6-In this sequel to A Rat's Tale (HarperTrophy, 2001), Montague Mad-Rat is to be married to Isabel Moberly-Rat as soon as his aunt and cousin arrive from Africa. The wedding is a grand affair, but Randal Reese-Rat, Isabel's old beau, is consumed with jealousy, so when an arson fire nearly kills the newlyweds, everyone is certain that Randal is the culprit. The simple yet evocative language and the warmly depicted characters make this fantasy a delight. Randal's obsession with wild animals reveals unsuspected depths to his soul, and Cousin Maggie's songs are funny and touching. The many black-and-white illustrations, full of detail, make it clear that these lithe, sociable New York rodents have busy lives and unique personalities. This chronicle of their adventures is sure to win new fans and please old ones.-Eva Mitnick, Los Angeles Public Library Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781417628223
  • Publisher: Turtleback Books: A Division of Sanval
  • Publication date: 6/28/2004
  • Format: Library Binding
  • Pages: 233

Meet the Author

Tor Seidler has written several books for young readers, including The Wainscott Weasel, an ALA Notable Book, and Mean Margaret, a National Book Award finalist. Brett Helquist is the illustrator of the popular Lemony Snicket novels. Both live in New York City.
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Read an Excerpt

Randal Reese-Rat had a smile on his snout, too, when he woke up the next day. After two weird, woozy weeks in bed, drifting in and out of consciousness, Randal could tell the poison had finally worked its way through his system.

He was tucked in a slipper in his family's crate: crate 8, Wharf 62. He was in the guest room instead of up in his own attic room so his mother wouldn't have to climb too many stairs while looking after him — though in truth he wouldn't have let them take him up to his room anyway. He kept a padlock, picked up from a pack rat, on his door and never let anyone in, not his sister, not even his parents.

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