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Summary: Rip Squeak is a mouse. He makes friends with a lonely cat and a theatrical frog. The adventures they have are extraordinary because they share them with their friends. This picture book tells the story of four animal friends and their adventures.
Type of Reading: bedtime story, playtime reading, family reading, read aloud book, learning to read
Recommended Age: read together: 3 to 8; read yourself: 7 to 9
Interest Level: 3 to 7
Reading Level: 2.7
Age of Child: Read with a 3-year-old boy and his 5-year-old brother.
Young Reader Reaction: My 3 year old picked this book first for about a month, right before nap time. We had to read Rip Squeak before anything else.
Adult Reader Reaction: I did not like the book as much as my son. I appreciated the detailed and interesting illustrations, but they did not always match up with the text. Similarly, the text did not stand up to the illustrations — some of the transitions from page to page were confusing, as if each page were taken from a different book. The story was not strong and just did not make much sense to me. Taking my above reaction to the book, I was confused as to why my son asked for the book over and over again. There was not much story, and I’m not sure what the conclusion was at the end. My guess was that the richness of the pictures made the book intriguing.
Pros: The characters in the book are richly illustrated. Kids will be drawn to the book because of the images.
Cons: This has an awkward storyline. This is a story about friendship, but I would not bring this book into the classroom. There are much stronger books out there.
Borrow or Buy: Borrow or skip. It’s probably worth checking out of the library on a rainy day. The pictures really are well done.
Educational Themes: Because the storyline is confusing, it is tough to discern what the educational theme would be.
Notes: This book is also available in a Spanish edition. The publisher donated a copy of this book knowing that we would consider it for review and provide an independent, unbiased profile. This book will be given to a nonprofit to help readers in need.
Literary Categories: Fiction - picture book series, animal characters, life lessons