Purpose of this Blog...

You may have noticed that not all books are equal in capturing children's imaginations and in cultivating those innocent, tender souls. My goal is to help you find the ones that do!
(Painting by Mary Cassatt: "Mrs Cassatt Reading to her Grandchildren" -1888)

Thursday, July 24, 2014

"Pet Advice" From Maggie Rudy's Super Cute Mice

Do you wish sometimes...

that you had a pet?

Maybe even just a little roly-poly?  

If this sounds like your child, you've got to run out and find this adorable new picture book from talented artist Maggie Rudy...

Maggie's hand sewn mice and charming dioramas will lead you and your child into a "Mouseland" that you'll want to venture a peek into again and again!

And her little mice offer plenty of good advice about what it means to own a pet, such as...
1. Pick a pet that suits your style.
2. A pet is not a doll (it might not like to play dress up)...
3. Your pet might like to play fetch...
4. Care for you pet...
- Keep it clean
- Keep it comfy, fed, and watered.
- And when it makes a mess, clean up after it!

You'll discover lots of other criteria for becoming a pet owner in this adorable book, but most important of all remember: "Pick a pet who will be your friend..."

I Wish I Had a Pet is Maggie Rudy's second book (after The House that Mouse Built.)  Hat tip to one of my blog followers - Martha from The Scrumptious Life - who turned me onto Maggie's amazing work!

I immediately got in touch with Maggie, and she graciously agreed to answer a few questions so we could get to know her a little better:
Maggie holding her newest book,
I Wish I Had A Pet
source: http://mouseshouses.blogspot.com/
I understand that you and your sisters acquired your first felted mice during a year that your family lived in England. What were a few of your favorite children's books growing up?
Maggie: I loved The Little Fur Family, by Margaret Wise Brown and Garth Williams; Ferdinand The Bull, by Munro Leaf and Robert Lawson, and my first chapter book, The Adventures of Sam Pig, by Allison Uttley, illustrated by Graham Percy. I loved Sam Pig! I was always drawn to the pictures in books at least as much the stories. Our father also read us the entire Ring series by J.R.R Tolkien when I was about six, and much of the imagery from those books stays with me still.

What led you into the world of art and creating your own little creatures?
Maggie: My grandmother and mother were both artists, so I had the example of people around me making things, and there were always art supplies to be had. And my sisters and I spent hours making little environments from moss and sticks for our troll dolls. I'm not exactly sure how, but those two things were certainly starting points for the creation of Mouseland.

When did you decide to take the plunge into the world of children's books? 
Maggie:I took a photograph of some mice one year for a Christmas card, which gave me the idea of using them as illustrations. My sons were leaving home and I was eager to explore new career possibilities, so I enrolled in a children's book illustration class at our community college. The instructor told me that I had something special with the mice, and that I should pursue a career in the field. So I did!  

I'm just crazy about Maggie's books and her fun blog that features the "newest exploits" of her mice!!  Maybe it's because when I was a baby, I was nicknamed "Wendy Mouse" by a close friend of my parents - he insisted that I was so small my cry was "just a squeak".  The pet name (pun intended) stuck, so I'm always ready for a good mouse story! Go here to read my past post, "FUN MOUSE STORIES (that aren't about Mickey!)"

Here's the book trailer for I Wish I Had a Pet.  What do you think? 

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