Small Mouse, Big City by Simon Prescott is a picture book adaptation of the Aesop’s Fable, Town Mouse and Country Mouse.
It is a picture book that is suitable for children, both boys and girls, aged between 2 and 7.
It tells the story of the Country Mouse and his trip to the city to visit his friend. The Country Mouse finds the city daunting and scary until he meets his friend, and discovers the delights the city has to offer, but eventually his heart pulls him back to the country where he belongs.
This is not such a moral tale as the original Aesop’s fable, preferring instead to take a positive spin on the story, showing the power of friendship, and how it can transform an alien landscape into one which can be magical.
The illustrations are the main delight here. The two page spread showing the tiny mouse against the huge sky scrapers in the city is particularly pleasing, as are the pages when the mouse is on the train, watching the countryside go by. The soft, pencil and pastel style of the drawings, suit the mood of the story perfectly.
This is a nice, gentle story with a kind heart, but my children, and I, found it rather dull. The best thing they had to say about it was that it was ‘nice.’
It would be lovely as part of a wider topic on friendship or emotions within school, or just a nice, gentle bed time story.