Publishers Weekly, 2004-12-13 Using a plot line and characters familiar to fans of The Gruffalo, this sequel introduces the appealing Gruffalo's child, a wide-eyed, fuzzy gal with barely budding horns, who goes in search of the mythical Big Bad Mouse. The repetitious tag lines ("Aha! Oho! A trail in the snow!/ Whose is this trail and where does it go?") speed the plot along as the brave Gruffalo's child decides that neither snake nor owl match her father's description of the villain in question. Scheffler's amiable depiction of the baby gruffalo in "the deep dark wood" builds up plenty of empathy for the galumphing youngster, who finally meets the mouse hero of the first Gruffalo tale. From this point on readers' sympathies and understanding of the story's theme may be tugged in more than one direction as the amiable Gruffalo child reveals his monster nature and decides to gobble up the mouse for a midnight treat. Then the clever mouse tricks the baby and sends the frightened Gruffalo child scurrying back to papa, and it's the mouse who follows the footprints ("Aha! Oho!") . They lead him to the cave where the Gruffalo's child, "a bit less brave... [and] a bit less bored," snuggles in the protective arms of her father. Scheffler fills the illustrations with child-friendly images-the mouse's Gruffalo snowman, and the furry female's cave drawings-to make this Gruffalo child seem not very scary at all. Ages 4-up. (Jan.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
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