4.11.2011

Cheesy City: Anatole

AnatoleI'm not sure how Eve Titus and Paul Galdone's Caldecott winner, Anatole, escaped my attention before this, but I was utterly charmed by the tale of this cheese-loving mouse.

Anatole, who regularly rides his bicycle into Paris to look for food scraps learns that humans do not like mice at all. Mon Dieu! Anatole, conscientious mouse that he is, decides that in return for a few morsels of cheese from a Parisian cheese factory he will leave his suggestions for improvement for each cheese variety. As you can imagine, the mouse's opinions are right on target, making the cheese factory incredibly successful. The factory owners make Anatole the VP in charge of Cheese Tasting, thus the little mouse is free to bring food home to his family, making Anatole the "happiest, most contented mouse in all France."

The city of Paris doesn't play a large role in this book. The mice live in a miniature version of a French village right outside of Paris. Anatole only experiences the city at night, and mostly at the feet of its occupants or dwarfed by a huge cheese factory.  Still, one gets the impression that being accepted (if only in secret) by such a huge cheese eating metropolis increases the importance of Anatole's accomplishments... or maybe that is just my own projection.

I'm noticing that many of these books set in Paris make me very hungry.

Want more?
I have not read them all but there are more Anatole books (which, except for the first, are out of print): Anatole and the Cat, Anatole and the Piano, Anatole and the Pied Piper, Anatole and the Poodle, Anatole and the Robot, Anatole and the Thirty Thieves, Anatole and the Toy Shop, Anatole in Italy, Anatole Over Paris

Big Kid says: That was a good book.
Little Kid says: Mouse on bike!

4 comments:

Raising a Happy Child said...

Haha, what is it about Paris and its food? No wonder my French neighbors are moving back home!

Carrie Vercuski said...

I haven't read these either! Thanks for the review, I will be checking them out soon!

Jackie H. said...

Haven't read it either but I enjoy Paul Galdone so I'll have to check it out.

Ms. Yingling said...

I always loved Anatole but never thought much about the city connection. I think I just liked the pictures.

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