Author: Anna Fargher
Illustrator: Sam Usher
Follow a courageous, fierce and loyal mouse as her adventures change; from night-time exploring round a comfy home while her parents sleep, to battling with a resistance army of unlikely comrades as an orphan in Normandy. Published by Pan Macmillan (2nd May 2019) this debut novel is a gripping adventure, set in WW2, and ideal for children in UKS2 (Years 5 and 6 / aged 9 to 11). It will especially appeal to animal lovers and those who have enjoyed The Animals of Farthing Wood and Watership Down.
Inspired by true stories of animal bravery and roles throughout WW2 and set in 1944, this adventure had me hooked from the start. The lead character is another fierce, courageous and loyal heroine (Pip) – who happens to be an utterly adorable mouse, from a very distinguished heritage of fine umbrella mice. She is orphaned during the blitz, in London, and befriended by a lovable search and rescue dog – Dickin. With his help, she embarks on a perilous journey to try and reach the only family she has left.
What follows is an adventure with many twists, turns and moments to both bring your heart to your mouth and tug at your heart strings. Friendships are challenged, loyalty tested and tough decisions made before Pip comes to realise that, sometimes what we are looking for most, is not where we thought it would be.
Sam Usher’s emotive illustrations add another layer to the characters and will especially appeal to reluctant readers and those who need persuading to try something new to them.
This book will appeal to children who like a good adventure, have read some of the popular books set in WW2 and are looking for a different approach and those who love animals (think Watership Down and Animals of Farthing Wood). There are dramatically described battle scenes that get your heart pounding, tender moments between friends and longing flashbacks to much-missed times that once were.
You can pre-order now via the links below or your preferred bookseller.
Huge thanks to Pan Macmillan and Macmillan Children’s UK for a copy of this book, in return for an honest review.