A Firefly in a Fir Tree: A Carol for Mice

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9780060009915: A Firefly in a Fir Tree: A Carol for Mice

When Hilary Knight discovered mice in his studio, he set about designing them a special outdoor home.

The mice had unique talents of their own. Maude, an expert needle-mouse, complemented Max's way with a hammer. Both shared a keen eye for found objects.

Mr. Knight's watercolor journal of this charming couple's enterprise, accompanied by Maude's daily notations, has become a joyous celebration of the Twelve Days of Christmas.

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About the Author:

Hilary Knight, son of artist-writers Clayton Knight and Katherine Sturges, was born in Hempstead, Long Island and grew up in the town of Roslyn. When he was six the family moved to Manhattan where he has lived ever since. In the past twenty years he has maintained an apartment in the center of New York City which doubles as his studio and houses his collection of books, programs, and recordings of theatre and film music.

His first published work appeared in Mademoiselle magazine in 1952, followed by drawings in House and Garden, Good Housekeeping, and Gourmet magazines.

Mr. Knight has illustrated over fifty books, nine of which he also wrote. Besides books, his work has included note and greeting cards, children's fashion advertisings, illustrations for Cricket magazine, record album covers and posters for the Broadway musicals Half A Sixpence, Hallelujah Baby!, No, No Nanette, Irene, and Gypsy.

Hilary Knight, son of artist-writers Clayton Knight and Katherine Sturges, was born in Hempstead, Long Island and grew up in the town of Roslyn. When he was six the family moved to Manhattan where he has lived ever since. In the past twenty years he has maintained an apartment in the center of New York City which doubles as his studio and houses his collection of books, programs, and recordings of theatre and film music.

His first published work appeared in Mademoiselle magazine in 1952, followed by drawings in House and Garden, Good Housekeeping, and Gourmet magazines.

Mr. Knight has illustrated over fifty books, nine of which he also wrote. Besides books, his work has included note and greeting cards, children's fashion advertisings, illustrations for Cricket magazine, record album covers and posters for the Broadway musicals Half A Sixpence, Hallelujah Baby!, No, No Nanette, Irene, and Gypsy.

From Booklist:

PreS-Gr.1. Partridge is to pear tree as firefly is to fir tree in Knight's sweet-as-a-candy cane spin on "The Twelve Days of Christmas," starring two true-love mice, Max and Maude, in the throes of holiday preparations and gift giving. First published in 1963, the illustrated "carol for mice" is here reissued with new, enlarged, full-color paintings, most presented as separate, titled visual vignettes pinned up on a bulletin board. The verses here echo the originals: five golden rings become five golden bells, six geese a-laying become six wrens a-nesting, but most, from crickets to "nine nuts for nibbling" reflect a natural, mouse-centric world. The book's charm lies in the contagious exuberance of Maude and Max and their inventive gifts, from two silver pins (to use as chopsticks) to "seven spiders spinning" spelling out the word "joy" in a web. In the end, every nook and cranny of the mouse house of found objects is happily humming with bees, tree frogs, and wrens, all having as much fun as the mice. A holiday treat. Karin Snelson
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

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