Every now and then we stumble across a book which is so brilliant that you wonder how you didn’t know it existed.
This book is one of them – though you could be forgiven knowing nothing about it as it’s only available in the Netherlands (where it originates from) and Australia & New Zealand (who have an English translation) from what I can gather – a UK release may be due next summer. We only found out about it as H’s nanna in Australia saw a good review, so bought it for us.
Did you love Bagpuss? If so, then you’ll probably love Mouse Mansion. The stories aren’t that similar, but there’s a common feel to them. The Mouse Mansion was created by Karina Schaapman for this book. The mansion is made from cardboard boxes and papier-mache and has over a hundred rooms, corridors and outdoor spaces. Inside the house Karina used fabrics from the 50s, 60s and 70s plus waste material. The mice that live within were also designed by Karina and the stories came about as each different room was being built, with Sam and Julia taking the lead.
It’s a beautiful book. I feel like you only see a fraction of what’s in the house – and looking at this picture it’s likely you do. There’s seventeen short stories on each page (I’m wishing H wasn’t getting this for Christmas as Julia gets chickenpox in one) and beautiful images to go with it all taken from the house.
Here’s a picture of the full house taken from the official Mouse Mansion blog:
The book was originally published in 2011, with the Australia/NZ edition in 2012. Truly, if you love your stories to be cute and sweet and normal classic stories, you’ll almost certainly love this.
I have no idea who is bringing the book out over here, but when I do I’ll update. Penguin are bringing it out in the UK in Summer 2013
But now, sadly, I have to wrap it up. H is one lucky girl this Christmas getting a book as lovely as this.