Friday, April 18, 2008

Module 7 Fantasy: Babymouse: Queen of the World!

Babymouse: Queen of the World!
Holm, Jennifer, L. and Matthew Holm. 2005. Babymouse: Queen of the World! New York: Random House.

Brother and sister team Jennifer and Matthew Holm have created a delightful, lovable hero in Babymouse, Queen of the World, a pre-teen rodent full of spunk and ingenuity. Babymouse struggles with all the angst of growing up, complete with feelings of insecurity, the desire for acceptance, and the daily challenges of school life. She has all the flaws of an endearing protagonist—she must straighten her less than perfect, curly whiskers each morning, she is not the most attentive student, and she must suffer the hardships of having an annoying baby brother who likes to pull on her tail. She tends to cope with the trials and tribulations of her existence through her overactive imagination where she wrestles giant squids, solves mysteries as a private detective, is a poker playing cowgirl, banished to Antarctica, and finally, Queen of the World. Additional characters such as her best friend, Wilson Weasel and her arch nemesis, Felicia Furrypaws (complete with naturally straight whiskers, of course) round out the creative cast of characters. At breakneck speed, Babymouse will slip into the most incredible daydreams and fantasies that rival the works of H. G. Wells and the Brothers Grimm. Drawn in simplistic black and white tones by the talented Matthew Holm, a graphic artist, Babymouse’s fantasies are highlighted in pink to aide the reader in visually keeping track of her reality and dream worlds. Just like Babymouse’s pink heart logo which can always be found somewhere on her, she carries a bit of that spark and imagination with her in either world, real or make-believe. The themes of friendship, acceptance, and independence will speak to readers of all ages. The simplistic format of the graphic novel will appeal to even the most reluctant reader. Luckily, there are many more adventures of Babymouse to be found in additional novels such as, Babymouse, Our Hero and Babymouse, Rock Star. As Babymouse, herself would say, “Typical”, she is anything but. Allow yourself to indulge in Babymouse.

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