Lstirl's Reviews > Rock Star

Rock Star by Jennifer L. Holm
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's review
Oct 26, 2008

really liked it

The lovable heroine of this graphic novel for the pint sized set is sure to delight.

Ages 7-12

A very pink and fantastical graphic novel featuring a sassy, fun-loving mouse, this book is a fun and entertaining read for the elementary aged student. It switches back and forth between over the top, giant, appealing fantasy and a reality that is easy for kids to identify with. The daily, ordinary issues Babymouse deals with, such as a pesky little brother and wanting to be first chair in the band are things most kids of this age group have to deal with, and Babymouse deals with them by turning to her larger than life fantasy world, where she is the star.

Quick to read, and with enough drama and action to delight the reader, Babymouse: Rock Star is a fun little story. This is by no means great literature as the story is thin and the extra characters flat. The plot is predictable and has a standard ending, but for young kids, this is an excellent transition from the familiar picture book to a longer, more complex story.

Publishers Weekly

PW said of Babymouse, the star of brother-and-sister team Jennifer L. Holm and Matthew Holm's new graphic novel series, "this personable, self-conscious mouse, with her penchant for pink hearts, resembles Kevin Henkes's Lilly, with some extra years of grade-school experience." Now she tries her hand (paw?) at being Babymouse: Rock Star. Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

It is true, this character is reminiscent of Lilly, with a little attitude and a lot of charm. This review is fairly brief, so there isn't much to comment on.

Children's Literature

In this book by the brother-sister Holm team (no pun intended), Babymouse has music in her soul... but only sour notes in her flute. The title is misleading, as the book begins with a rock star fantasy but quickly segues into just another day. It is Babymouse's fanciful imagination that steers the disjointed story along, as one event triggers a fantasy, then the next (unrelated) event inspires another. On "another boring" Wednesday, Babymouse gets caught in the eye of an imaginary tornado and finds herself in a Wizard of Oz parody; a flute-playing fantasy transforms Babymouse into "The Famous Pied Pipermouse" who succeeds in ridding the land of rats only because her music is so bad they run in the opposite direction. For reasons that remain unclear, the apparently rich and talented Penny Poodle offers to help Babymouse become a better musician. Under Penny's tutelage, Babymouse's imagination goes into overdrive (including an homage to The Sound of Music) but her flute-playing does indeed improve. There are many more compelling and/or entertaining stories available for young readers and better graphics to go with them, but maybe that is the point. In a time when what you see is not always what you get, Babymouse is unpretentious fluff, pure and simple.

I am not familiar with other graphic novels, so I don't have anything to compare, but I do agree that Babymouse IS unpretentious fluff. But, sometimes that is the joy in reading for children, and this book does offer an escapist fantasy.

School Library Journal

Gr 2-4-Babymouse is spunky, ambitious, and, at times, a total dweeb. In this fourth book in the series, she daydreams of being a rock star, and her concerts and world tours are illustrated in shades of pink. Meanwhile, in her ordinary life, she enchants the audience at a student concert with her flute playing, but never gives up her dreams of stardom on the big stage. The illustrations, both pink-toned and black and white, are clever and uncluttered, making them easy to follow for a young audience. They do a fine job of showing the emotions of the endearing young mouse and her friends.-Scott La Counte, Anaheim Public Library, CA Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

I don't really find the illustrations 'uncluttered,' as I had a tough time sometimes figuring out what the picture was OF. However, they are cute and charming.
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