Walter: The Story of a Rat

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9781932425413: Walter: The Story of a Rat

This is the story of a writer and a reader. The writer is a person. The reader is a rat. They share an old house on Long Island, but have never met. Walter, the rat, would love to know Miss Pomeroy, the writer. Miss Pomeroy is an irritable recluse and has no desire to know ANYONE. How these two lonely creatures discover one another is the essence of this story.

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About the Author:

Barbara Wersba is the author of thirty books for young people, including her novel Tunes for a Small Harmonica: A Novel, a National Book Award nominee. A reviewer for the New York Times Book Review for many years, Wersba has also written for the stage and television. She lives in Sag Harbor, New York, where she runs a small publishing company called The Bookman Press.

From School Library Journal:

Grade 4-8–An unlikely friendship develops between Walter, literate rat, and Amanda Pomeroy, elderly writer of children's books. With frequent references to adult literature (Edna St. Vincent Millay, Stephen King, Tennessee Williams, and Sir Walter Scott, and that's just the first page), Wersba lovingly describes Walter's path through Ms. Pomeroy's library and his discovery that she has created a whole series of books about a secret-agent mouse. He also becomes aware of Stuart Little, Noisy Nora, and a host of other mouse characters (but no rats). Some older readers will recall their literary heritage while perhaps gaining advice for moving out from it. Diamond's black wash and line illustrations depict the elderly woman and the wide-eyed and well-mannered rat with charm. The writerly prose, erudite vocabulary, and the plot's nearly flat trajectory make this slow for casual readers, and some literalists may wonder how a mouse's tiny paws can put snack dishes in the sink or heft heavy books. But those with a love of words will enjoy the way Wersba shows Walter sneaking up on a friendship with the elusive but observant author. Like Richard Kennedy's Come Again in the Spring (HarperCollins, 1976) or Randall Jarrell's The Bat-Poet (S & S, 1967), this book gives readers some writing to remember and a chance to view the world from a different perspective.–Susan Hepler, formerly at Burgundy Farm Country Day School, Alexandria, VA
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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