Thursday, 26 June 2014

Review: Millhouse by Natale Ghent

Tundra Books has yet to send me something I haven't loved!

Millhouse is a charming children's story about a peculiar, yet loveable hairless guinea pig, whose looks and interests make him the target of mockery in the pet store where he lives. Milly is an optimist who continues to hope for the day that someone will love him for who he is. 

Readers will certainly emphasize with this "ugly duckling" character. Milly's eccentricity paired with his deep love for the arts, his gentle soul, and optimism make him an irresistible hero. 

Summary: Millhouse is a faint-hearted, hairless guinea pig. A great lover of all things theatrical, most especially the work of William Shakespeare, Milly longs for the limelight and someone to love. However, after the death of his beloved owner, the great actor Sir Roderick Lord Kingswagger, Millhouse is abandoned to a neglected and dusty pet shop filled with other rodents -- some rude, some odd, some cute and some downright frightening. Finding himself a reviled outcast and a target of the nasty Pepper Brown ferret, Millhouse sets about trying to find a way back to the theater and a happy home, and in doing so experiences more drama than he could ever have imagined.                                      Google image. I do not own this picture.

Millhouse makes for great bedtime reading for older children, but the use of illustrations every few pages can open this story up to slightly younger children, too. This book is recommended for readers ages 
7-10, but Natale Ghent's writing channels beloved children's classics, making this book a perfect and timeless addition to any bookshelf.

Comparable titles include Watership Down and Charlotte's Web. Animal lovers will adore this story, and all kids can relate to Milly's feelings of alienation, of being teased, and of feeling lonely. But everyone has something in them that makes them extraordinary, and Milly teaches young readers that one day the world will see you for who you are. You just have to be brave enough to show them!

A beautiful and slightly heartbreaking story of hope, acceptance, kindness, courage, and bravery. Parents, librarians, educators: there's no content to be wary of, and nothing NOT to love! 

I'll never look at a hairless guinea pig the same way again!

4 Stars

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