Tuesday, November 24, 2020

Mouse Watch

Gilbert, J.J. Mouse Watch
November 3rd 2020 by Disney-Hyperion
E ARC Provided by Edelweiss Plus

Bernie is a young mouse who has always wanted to join the Mouse Watch, an organization of mice that does good in society, much like the Rescue Rangers founded by Disney's Chip and Dale. She has sent countless applications, and when her latest attempt to catch the eye of Gadget Hackwrench, the head of Mouse Watch, ends in a broken leg, she despairs of ever joining the group. Of course, this is when she gets an invitation to come to the training center. Even though her parents are worried, especially since her older brother was cruelly killed by an evil rat, they let her go. Once there, she meets fellow student Jarvis, who has tremendous computer hacking skills but whom she doesn't quite trust because he is a rat. When a training simulation they are in stops suddenly and they realize that everyone in the training facility has disappeared, they know they need to do something. Through the news, they find that a cheese smelling gas is being spread everywhere and wreaking havoc; the evil Dr. Thornpaw has taken a sleeping gas produced by Hackwrench and altered it for his evil purposes. Using all manner of cleverly mouse technology and gadgets, will Bernie and Jarvis be able to save the day?
Strengths: This was a very well written, engaging book. The descriptions were well worded and moved the story along instead of bogging it down, and the descriptions of mouse houses, clothing, daily life and spy practices would be enthralling to readers who loved Norton's The Borrowers. There' some social awareness, albeit  in mouse/rat form, that is a nice, light lesson for younger readers. Bernie has a well entrenched dream and is allowed to follow it with the support of her parents, even though it seems unobtainable. The action scenes are well done, and Dr. Thornpaw is an evil supervillain who could easily be in league with Gargamel, Shredder, or the Purple Pieman. 
Weaknesses: Since Rescue Rangers was on television 30 years ago, this must be trying to cash in on the nostalgia factor with parents buying the book in order to introduce their children to the series, but I would have liked it more if it hadn't had the Disney link. I don't know that my readers will get the references to Chip and Dale.
What I really think: My students are much less enthralled with mice books than I am, so I may not purchase. I would definitely buy this one for an elementary school library, since it was very well done and enjoyable, and has the possibility of being a series. 
Ms. Yingling


  1. This makes me nostalgic for The Rescuers! How can kids not be enthralled by mouse books?

  2. This looks really good. I'm thankful, once again, for your constantly finding cool books.