A Loveable Little Mouse with a Big Imagination
Babymouse: Queen of the World!
by Jennifer L. Holm & Matthew Holm
Series: Babymouse (Book 1)
Publication Date: December 27, 2005
Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers
Babymouse Website (Lots of fun things to do!)
Buy the Book
The Night I Met Babymouse (and Her Creator!)
On Friday, November 14th, in Fairfax, Virgina, the Fairfax County Public Library, cosponsored by the Friends of Pohick Regional Library, hosted a special event with award-winning author Jennifer L. Holm. Having read and loved her middle grade books Penny From Heaven and The Fourteenth Goldfish, I was excited to have a chance to meet Jennifer and have her sign some books. Little did I know I was in for a treat that would open up a whole new world: Babymouse!
The large audience was filled with kids, mainly ages 6 to 10, from many of the local elementary schools. Some had even traveled from Maryland. Ms. Holm held the kids attention with an interactive presentation that included a group reading from the newest Babymouse title, Happy Birthday, Babymouse, creative drawings of Babymouse in which she utilized ideas from a child in the audience, and a question and answer period. Whether to ask a question or to volunteer to assist Ms. Holmes, the children were waving their arms in the air, squirming to reach higher in order to be seen, and pointing at their friends urging the author to pick them! It was hard to tell who the bigger draw was: Babymouse or Jennifer L. Holm herself. Her humor, infectious spirit, and childlike enthusiasm endeared her to these kids to the point that she was like a rock star! In fact, when the presentation ended, the majority of kids and parents stuck around and stood patiently in line holding precious copies of Babymouse or Squish books waiting for an autograph and a picture. Ms. Holm signed and posed for pictures for an hour and a half, never rushing through the kids or glancing behind her to see how many were still waiting in line, and — just as impressive — never failing to appear less than completely engaged and joyful.
Needless to say, after making the acquaintance of Jennifer L. Holm and learning about her loveable rodent Babymouse, I had no choice but to run to the nearest bookstore and dive in. And that’s exactly what I did! (See my review below the photos.)
All photos taken from the Fairfax County Public Library’s Flicker page. More photos can be found here.
It’s the same thing every day for Babymouse. Where is the glamour? The excitement? The adventure? Nothing ever changes, until . . . Babymouse hears about Felicia Furrypaws’s exclusive slumber party. Will Babymouse get invited? Will her best friend, Wilson, forgive her if she misses their monster movie marathon? Find out in Babymouse: Queen of the World, a graphic novel with attitude!
Babymouse is a dreamer whose imagination paints in vivid color (probably pink and sparkly!) a life more adventurous, daring, and glamorous than her humdrum everyday life. You see, Babymouse is generally late (for the school bus and returning library books) and struggles with a locker that has not only a tendency to stick, but a propensity for swallowing homework. With her untamed curly whiskers, Babymouse isn’t the most beautiful or popular girl in school. She yearns to be adored like Felicia Furrypaws, but instead she’s kind of invisible. Though Babymouse has a loyal best friend, Wilson the Weasel, she would give anything to be popular. And in Babymouse: Queen of the World!, we find out exactly what happens when Babymouse is given a choice between partying with the cool kids and watching a movie with her best friend.
First off, Jennifer L. Holm and her illustrator brother Matthew have a huge hit with Babymouse! The sister-brother team makes good use of the graphic novel format with a story that perfectly brings to life all of Babymouse’s imagined thoughts. And what fun! We’re treated to Babymouse as a detective, starring in Cinderella and Frankenstein, and venturing into the wild west and outer space!
Don’t be fooled. Babymouse is not just clever marketing with pink sparkly covers, girly hearts, and inventive drawings. If you stripped everything away and left only the words, you’d discover a simple yet sophisticated storyline. The imaginative elements are all the more powerful because the story is grounded in realism. Kids can readily relate to Babymouse’s struggles. We even see her cave-in to peer pressure by giving Felicia Furrypaws her homework. And when she does, there are consequences. I can’t get into much more without huge spoilers, so suffice it to say that Babymouse learns the true meaning of friendship and in so doing, discovers she’s already queen!
— Dawn Teresa
5 of 5 Hearts. A Loveable Little Mouse with a Big Imagination.
Author Jennifer L. Holm says that her love of comic books coupled with the failure to find a superhero with whom she could identify inspired the creation of Babymouse. And it’s just that combination of elements that makes Babymouse magical. She’s an Everymouse with superhero-sized dreams that jump off the page. Kids will nibble these up and scurry to grab each successive title! This is a series not to be missed!