C. R. MudgeonThis book came highly recommended by friend who suggested that I might find the illustrations exciting, and let me tell you, it did not disappoint. In fact, it appointed (hedgehog pun intended). The simple, quiet, habitual life of one C. R. Mudgeon is thrown upside down by the arrival of a new neighbor. When Paprika the squirrel moves in to the apartment upstairs and one tree over from C. R.’s hole, C. R. becomes agitated in every one of his senses. When it appears he can’t take it any longer, C. R.’s character is put to the test, but it all has a heartwarming conclusion. No one is eaten (you think I’m kidding – see Caldecott).

C. R. Mudgeon
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Author Leslie Muir’s plot is solid, the characters are well-developed, and the storyline and message are very pleasing. But the best part of this book is Julian Hector’s illustrations. Each page’s artwork is fantastic. The subtle emotions displayed by C. R. and Paprika are wonderfully rendered, and in the case of C. R.’s curmudgeonly (oh, I get it now) character, it was very important for him to remain sympathetic and likeable. The landscapes are so inviting, I think like I’d like to live in (or at least visit) a Hector-drawn world. Let’s hope Hector has lots more picture books coming.

 

Borrow. Read. Return. Repeat.