Title: Bless This Mouse
Author: Lois Lowry
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Pub Date: 03/21/2011
Reviewed from: Galley from Netgalley
I have a bit of a strange relationship with Lois Lowry. For the most part I adore her books, and then every once in awhile I read a book that either doesn't excite me or that I completely hate and I don't know what to do with myself. How can I dislike a book by LL?
Fortunately I am exceptionally pleased to share that Bless This Mouse is fantastic. Beautiful! Fun! Heartwarming! Perhaps it's because of a childhood addiction to Brian Jacques, but Animal Fantasies will always have a special place in my heart and to see them done really well makes me beyond happy.
Hildegarde is the leader of a large group of mice that live in the church and she takes care of them well. She organizes how they will stay safe when the church celebrates the Feast of St. Francis and all the parishioners bring in their animals (including the cats!), she helps the families find places to stay together and hidden, and most importantly, she keeps a watch out for The Great X.
Despite the drama of the exterminators coming and the feast of St. Francis being moved inside, this was a quiet book - it almost seemed more like an extended character study of this group of mice - Hildegarde in particular. Lowry tiptoes into this world and writes what is there and who is there and how they behave and then just as quietly* she tiptoes out and leaves this world to continue revolving without her observation.
*For those of you who've read this book: yes, I know that final scene was dramatic and gorgeous but wasn't it also beautiful and quiet in it's own way?
This book was short and I feel like writing more about what happened will give away what little plot there is - so I'm just going to leave this with a hearty recommendation for anyone who is a fan of Brian Jaques, Edward Tulane, or who just wants a beautiful, gentle read.