Book Review: Horatio Squeak

By Karen Foxlee and Evie Barrow

“In a very fine house, on a very grand street

Lived the tiniest mouse you could possibly meet.”

This book was only recently released, but already has the vibe of an old school classic. From the rhyming text, to the illustrations – its reminds me of books I had when I was little. Even the title of this one is super sweet – I just wished there were more people in the world named Horatio.

The story follows a little mouse, the youngest of twelve, who is “always, ALWAYS, very polite’. He is small and weak (as described by the narrator) but also quite adorable with his threadbare jacket and red glasses. One day little Horatio gets something in the mail which rocks his mixy matchy socks – a party invitation! And he must muster the courage to go.

It is a really sweet tale that has an old timey feel to it that I just adored. It is all about dealing with the small feats in life, like getting ready and going to a party. And boy is it worth it when he gets there – you won’t believe who he gets to party with… Even I felt a little nervous for Horatio at one stage.

Horatio is a super likeable character with a very real and personable problem – this book is great for anyone who has ever felt nervous and experienced some social anxiety (haven’t we all at some stage!). It also shows the importance of standing up for what you believe in and for those who need our help. The illustrations are gorgeous, and the little hints of humour make this one a fabulous book you will want to read again and again.

It is a little on the longer side, so would suit older audiences of five plus, and I wonder if maybe it could have been cut a bit shorter. Ultimately, this is a beautiful book with a wonderful message!

Title: Horatio Squeak

Author and Illustrator: Karen Foxlee and Evie Barrow

Publisher: Walker Books

Published: 2019

Ages: 5+


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