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R. Brian Mackey
Illustrated by S. Alexander Clarke.

Ottawa, Watershed Publishing Enterprises, c1984.
unpaged, paper, $2.95.
Distributed by Watershed Publishing Enterprises, Box 5010, Station F, Ottawa, ON,K2C 3H3 ISBN 0-9691496-2-X.

Grades 1-3.

Reviewed by Margaret Marsh .

Volume 12 Number 6
1984 November

In Mystery in Mouse Hamlet, second in the Mouse Hamlet series, Brian Mackey relates in two dozen pages an imaginative mystery with a moral.

The village sign was missing! Someone had stolen it! Several mice of the village said that Tinker, the rat, must have been the thief. Everymouse agreed. Everymouse ...except Cricket Fieldmouse. While even the mayor of Mouse Hamlet was convinced of Tinker's guilt, Cricket alone maintained the rat's innocence. How Cricket pushes aside his own fears in order to prove Tinker's innocence makes an exciting story for the young reader.

This brief, well-illustrated story makes a good springboard for discussion. The Everymouse of the story is Everyman (or every boy or girl). We tend to make hasty judgments and to be critical of others, but the mayor's declaration at the story's end sums up the attitude that should be adopted by us all, "We have learned two lessons today, not to judge someone before we know the truth, and that doing a bad thing is not the same as being bad," Everymouse agreed.

Margaret Marsh, Waterloo County Board of Education, Kitchener, ON.
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