New York Times bestselling author of The Unwanteds brings us an epic animal adventure story perfect for fans of Pax and A Wolf Called Wander.
The only good cat is a fed cat. Clarice, a young ship mouse, knows this to be true.
She and her brother, Charles Sebastian, were taught to be careful—as all mice are—but caution is no match for the sea, which took their mother, and it is certainly no match for Special Lady, the horrid cat who ate their sister. Now the siblings hide in their pantry crate, knowing every move they make could be their last.
When a shocking mutiny forces Clarice onto a small, leaky boat with Special Lady and a dozen hungry sailors with deadly boots, Charles Sebastian is left on the ship to fend off mutineers, a flock of irate chickens, and an inquisitive human prisoner—a mouse’s worst enemy.
Being careful may have saved them in the past, but now Clarice and Charles Sebastian will need to grow bold if they are to survive . . . and keep their promise to find one other again.
From the New York Times bestselling author of The Unwanteds comes an unforgettable adventure filled with perseverance, kindness, and hope, brought to life in black-and-white illustrations by Antonio Caparo.
Delicately balancing hope and despair, McMann (the Unwanteds Quests series) lovingly brings to life the tale of ship's mouse Clarice and her runt-of-the-litter brother, Charles Sebastian. Life aboard a ship at sea is all that cunning, pragmatic Clarice and intelligent yet impulsive Charles Sebastian have ever known. While they have plenty, dangers abound including the "three horrid ship cats," one of whom devoured their sister; disease, which killed their other siblings; and unexpected waves, which took their mother, leaving them with only each other. A mutiny, however, sets the siblings on a bleak, wondrous journey of self-discovery, as they search for one another and find salvation in the most unlikely places. Leaning heavily on the theme of loss, the novel normalizes feelings of sadness and grief for younger readers, relayed in an assured tone and elegant prose. Caparo's full-page, fine-lined b&w illustrations emphasize the relationships from varying, carefully sketched angles. Told from the shifting viewpoints of each mouse, the narrative keenly focuses on the obstacles placed in their paths and the growth processes both the positive and negative each must follow to find their way to a new normal. Ages 8 up. Agent: Michael Bourret, Dystel, Goderich & Bourret.