Thursday, February 14, 2008

Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of Nimh

O'Brian, Robert C. 1971. Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH

Mrs. Frisby, the head of a family of field mice, lived in an underground house in the vegetable garden of a farmer named Mr. Fitzgibbon.

Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH won the Newbery in 1972. This was my first time to read it. My first impression? Slightly odd, but odd in a good way. A really good way. It took me a few chapters to suspend my disbelief. Talking animal books while aren't completely foreign to me, aren't my norm usually. But once I allowed myself the opportunity to really embrace the story for what it was--fantasy not realistic fiction--then I was more than hooked.

The story is about the Frisby family. Mrs. Frisby is the head of the family. It is winter, and one of her children, Timothy, is sick. She's told by the "doctor" mouse that to move her son would result in his death. Yet move they must if they're to survive. For spring has come. The thaw has begun. The frost is long over. And she overhears the farmer making plans to get out the tractor. Her home--their home--is in the field. Their home is a "slightly damaged cinder block" that is almost completely underground. The story is her search for help. It is this search for help which will lead her directly to the rats.

Mrs. Frisby is afraid of the rats. Almost everyone is afraid of the rats. But when her son's life hangs in the's a time for a mother to overcome her fears--all her fears--even if those fears are rats and owls and crows.

I definitely recommend this book. It was fun and enjoyable.

233 pages


Unknown said...

Animal fantasy is one of my favourite genres and I just love this book! Glad to see you liked it.

Emma said...

I've never really been a fan of talking animal books, but I adored this one as a child. Because I started off with a second hand copy and re-read it lots of times it basically fell apart! I'm glad you liked it too - I wonder if I'd like it in the same way as an adult?

Jeane said...

This is one of those books I read years after seeing the Disney movie version. I really liked it, even approaching it as an adult.

Anonymous said...

I read this aloud to my son a couple of months ago, and we both enjoyed it very much. Although, truth be told, I think he was a little disappointed that the violent sword fight near the end of the animated version was not in the book.

Rachel said...

I absolutely loooved this book! But even better was its sequel "Racso and the Rats of NIMH." If you haven't read it yet I highly recommend it!! (:

miriam said...

i loooved this book if you did not read this book please do because trust me you will love it :)