Some very exciting news has recently come to light – Graffeg are publishing a new larger hardback format of the classic picture book stories Mouse and Mole, written by Joyce Dunbar and illustrated by James Mayhew.
First published in 1993, they received rave reviews, with Dinah Hall describing the characters as standing “alongside the greats of children’s literature, Toad, Ratty and Winnie the Pooh.” (Sunday Telegraph)
The stories have been out of print for almost 20 years. We are very lucky to have some copies in the Curriculum Centre. Aimed at children between 4 and 7 years old, each picture book contains a number of short stories, which are both humorous and philosophical. We learn that things happen when you least expect them to, mishaps take place but there is always a positive side to everything and wintry days are not so bad after all. The four Mouse and Mole picture books are:
- Mouse and Mole
- Mouse and Mole have a party
- A very special Mouse and Mole
- Happy Days for Mouse and Mole
More about the Author and Illustrator
Joyce Dunbar has written over 80 children’s books. She has also worked as an English teacher for over 20 years. Mouse and Mole, like many of her other stories, has been performed on stage. The Mouse and Mole series has also been adapted for television. Dunbar has worked with numerous illustrators, including Polly Dunbar(her daughter), Russell Ayto, Debi Gliori, Brita Granstrom, Tim Hopgood, P.J. Lynch, Susan Varley and of course James Mayhew.
Joyce Dunbar has written some lovely children’s stories about deafness. Her picture book Moonbird, which was illustrated by Jane Ray, tells the story of a boy in a bubble who can’t hear the sounds of the earth. He has to learn to speak with his hands and listen with his eyes. And her fiction story Mundo and the weather child tells the story of a deaf child and his imaginary companion.
James Mayhew’s first picture book Katie’s Picture Show was published in 1989 and was inspired by a trip to London with his sister Kate and their Grandma. In this story, Katie visits the National Gallery where five famous paintings come alive. The Katie series are really useful stories for teaching children about art. Mayhew is currently working on the picture book story Mrs Noah’s Garden, which will be published next year and follows on from the fantastic Mrs Noah’s Pockets. (Both stories were written by Jackie Morris.)
If you want to read more about the publication of the new editions of the Mouse and Mole picture books, take a look at the recent post on James Mayhew’s blog. And it seems there are some new stories on the way too!