Young readers will admire Mimette’s bravery as she refuses to abandon her passion, even as she’s faced with the danger of being trapped and killed. She spends her time soaking up the nightly performances and dedicates hours during the day to watching and learning from the opera house’s ballet mistress, perfecting her own pirouettes until she transforms into “a beautiful dancer.” Even the last-ditch effort by management to capture her fails: when famous cat Hobart, “the best opera house mouse catcher in the world,” is brought in, he’s entranced by Mimette’s dancing and reflects on her “arabesques… [as] the most exquisite I have ever seen.” His admiration prevents him from harming Mimette, though the two work together to keep his reputation intact and give Mimette the freedom to dance unhindered.
Krohley’s digital illustrations evoke the sophistication of refined ballet performances, with breathtaking sets and elegant costumes spinning across the pages as Mimette and Hobart press on towards their happy ending. Those readers devoted to dance will find much to relish here, as Krohley masterfully elicits the magic of a star performance under the shimmering lights—in Hobart’s own words, Mimette seems to “[float] on stage,” and her dedication to becoming a one-of-a-kind dancer will inspire as much as it entertains.
Takeaway: A young mouse achieves her dream to dance ballet against all odds.
Comparable Titles: Clive McFarland’s Caterpillar Dreams, Debbie Allen’s Dancing in the Wings.
Design and typography: A
Marketing copy: A