Mr Mouse by Jacqueline Mead illustrations by David Smith
I am excited to announce that my new book The Tales of Mr Mouse and Friends is due for publication on 30th July 2021.

I started writing poems about Mr. Mouse 4 years ago. It started out as a bit of fun. The first poem was basic and intended as a one-off. I rhymed Mouse with house and named a river the River Louse. Mr. Mouse had a house on the River Louse was born.

Over a three-year period, I wrote about Mr. Mouse meeting his match Hilda, his children being rescued by coastguards, he made new friends amongst them a horse and master, a dolly called molly, a Fly with one eye, and an Elf with one ear. I became very fond of these characters and when the pandemic came and lockdown came; I started thinking about turning the poems into a book. It meant I had to think about expanding the characters in the book and I wrote several new poems about Suzy the Squirrel, Eric the Gnome, and surviving a pandemic.

I divided the chapters into Winter, Spring, Summer, Winter, rewriting some chapters to fit the season. The book has twelve chapters, following Mr. Mouse over three years. Each chapter has an illustration representing the key elements of that chapter.

The illustrations are pencil drawings, full colour and they are vibrant and fun.

Once the script was complete, of course, it had to be edited. I had it professionally edited and during the process submitted the manuscript to Austin Macauley Publishers. In the meantime, whilst waiting to hear from the publishers, I contacted an illustrator via Facebook.

Whilst deciding whether to publish with AM or stay on my own and publish via kindle, for example, David Smith drew Mr. Mouse for me. I meant this to be a test piece, but it ended up being the book cover. David Smith captured Mr. Mouse fabulously. He is a very dapper chap with a trilby hat and waistcoat, cake in one hand and a teapot in the other. It totally represents Mr. Mouse as I had envisaged him. Mr Mouse can always find time for tea and cake.

My books are suitable for all ages, whether you have a young one you enjoy reading to at bedtime or whether they are self-reader. Although this is a children’s short novel, some sentences, and even whole paragraphs, rhyme. As Mr. Mouse started his life as a character in a poem, it seemed fitting to leave rhymes in the book. I can’t wait for you all to meet Mr. Mouse. I have already started a new children’s short novel, Mr. Mouse builds a bridge. A third book is also in production, which is a child’s picture book and introduces you to Mr. Mouses' children called Meet the Children.

The first chapter of this first book ends as Mr. Mouse, Frog and Bee become good friends. They bond over cake and tea, and the illustration below depicts it beautifully.

Over afternoon tea, the new-found friends grew fond of each other and exclaimed, "Let us agree, we will be friends for all eternity.”

David Smith has illustrated the book - you can follow Mr. Mouse and David Smith on Twitter @tales_mouse @artofdavidsmith
Meet the Fly with one eye and the Elf with one ear. Mr. Fly is lonely as other flies due to his impaired sight have cast Fly aside. However, Fly meets the Elf with one ear and together with Mr. Mouse, Frog and Bee they become firm friends. Elf devises a plan to assist Fly in traversing from one side of the riverbank to the other.

I think I have it,” the elf announced, excitedly. “The frog lives on a log in the middle of a bog, which is in the middle of the two rivers, River Louse and River Wry. Therefore, Frog will sit upon a lily pad and make his usual sound of ribbit, ribbit. You will flap your wings and fly towards him. When you are halfway across, Fly, you can take a short break. Bee will be positioned on the riverbank of the River Wry and will make his usual buzzing sound. You will use this sound to guide you on your final leg. Finally, Mr Mouse will hold and wave a flag, indicating your final destination, on the ground.”
Everyone agreed it was a fabulous plan and could not wait to get started, the sooner the better, as everyone could not wait to meet each other.

Delightful picture of the band of mother hens called Five in a Pen, from The Tales of Mr Mouse and Friends written by Jacqueline Mead, Illustrated by David Smith
The picture above illustrates beautifully Chapter 4 Party on the River Louse.
Mr Mouse missed his friends desperately.
However, there had been no rain for several days and on one of the warmer ones, the three friends were congregating in Mr Mouse’s house on the River Louse. As usual, they were enjoying a slice of Mr Mouse’s delicious carrot cake and a cup of tea.
Suddenly and quite out of the blue, Mr Mouse declared, “I must get out of here!”
Both friends looked horror-struck.

How does this end with a party and music by Five in a Pen?  You will have to read the book to find out. 🤗
I will be running a competition in a few weeks to win a signed copy, so keep your eyes on your inbox for further information.  Please feel free to share my newsletter with your friends and on social media if they have young children who may like such a book.
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Bookstore Jacqueline Mead · 1 Norwich Road · Exwick · Exeter, Devon EX4 2DN · United Kingdom

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