Mara's Reviews > Secrets at Sea

Secrets at Sea by Richard Peck
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Jun 25, 2012

really liked it
bookshelves: books-to-buy, adventure, 4-stars, animal-fiction
Read from July 01 to 02, 2012 , read count: 1

Cover Blurb: It’s cute and charming, which is exactly in keeping with the story. I love the title’s font and the colors; very vibrant and fun. What I don’t quite like is the title itself. It doesn’t really capture much of what the story is about.

What I Liked: Helena is a plucky mouse heroine who takes the job of looking after her siblings very seriously. Even so, her fussing and worrying doesn’t get annoying because the behavior of her siblings really does warrant it. Helena treats Louise far better than Louise certainly deserves, I thought, which was commendable. I loved the illustrations because the mice actually looked like real mice, and not characterized cartoons.

What I Disliked: I would have liked to have known Olive better. The mice and other people are always hinting that there’s some reason why no one will marry her, but I never really gathered why it was, and since Olive’s predicament is what starts the adventure in the first place, I think Olive should have been given a bit more writing attention than she was.

Believability: Well, we are talking about mice who sew, wear clothes, talk, drink coffee, write, and do other things that real mice cannot, and do not, do. So believability is a hard thing to talk about at all.

Writing Style: This is the first Richard Peck story I have read, and I must say that I am positively in love with his simple, but funny and charming, writing style. It would have delighted me when I was little, and it delights me as an adult. For a charming little story like this, Richard Peck’s style is perfect. It isn’t beautiful like Rosemary Sutcliff’s, but it has it’s own charm. It isn’t sophisticated like a lot of classics, but it doesn’t talk down to its Reader. It isn’t bitingly sarcastic like Charles Dickens‘s, but it is amusing.

Content: Nothing.

Conclusion: It has some surprises, but everything of course works out well and things end happily, just as charming adventures with talking animals usually do. I’m being slightly sarcastic, but I’m not complaining; Secrets at Sea begged for a happy ending for all characters, so it fit.

Recommended Audience: Kids, of course, and people who like stories about talking animals, but want something very quick and short to read. Girls might like this one better than guys.
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Reading Progress

07/02/2012 page 119
50.0%
07/02/2012 page 238
100.0% "A cute little story; ideal for anyone who likes animal stories, but wants something short to read."

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