CM . . .
. Volume XXI Number 11. . . .November 14, 2014
When a little mouse and his friend Gustave decide to keep going farther and farther from home, they are blissfully unaware of the dangerous territory they are entering. Despite Mother's warnings about the existence of a cat, the curious two wander out into forbidden territory. A disaster befalls the adventurers when they are suddenly confronted with a monstrous huge-eyed cat. In what follows, Gustave makes a move which saves his friend:
But when the little mouse returns to find his friend, there is no sign of him. He is heartbroken. What can he say to his mother about Gustave? He finds his lonely way home, weeping. Mother understands. Instead of scolding her son, she holds him close and hands him a little stuffed mouse whose ears are soft pink like Gustave's.
Gustave is what might be considered to be a darkly comic story. Its theme of disobedience leading to tragedy does not often surface in picture books for the five to eight age range. A surprise ending lightens the story a little, but the themes of danger and darkness (depicted in text and pictures) persist right up to the last two pages.
A retired teacher-librarian, Valerie Nielsen lives in Winnipeg, MB.
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use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any
other reproduction is prohibited without permission.
Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.