Friday, December 15, 2017
Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of Nimh (Robert C O'Brien)
I must have read this book when I was younger. It was all vaguely familiar and comfortable. However, I couldn't remember enough of the story to justify not continuing to the end - and I'm glad I did. I loved it. We read it for our grade 3 book club and it was a hit! The books we've read so far this year were pretty easy. This one had much more substance. It made for a smaller crowd at book club, but a great discussion. Some were troubled to not know who the rats were that didn't make it out. Maybe that comes up in the next books? Not sure. I am definitely interested in reading more.
I love the theme of reading and learning. For the rats, reading brings them hope and freedom so they can escape their evil Nimh captors. It changes their life forever....even makes them unable to enjoy their social circles the same as they did in the past. Life changes because they learned to read. If they hadn't learned to read they would have been content to live in their cages forever and have someone look after them. Because they could read, they created a whole new social structure where they really got into a rat race (err, people race??) and dissatisfaction was created. I also liked that rats are positive characters. That doesn't often happen with rats. They are very smart creatures so I was glad to see someone give them a little respect!
Mrs. Frisby, a widowed mouse with four small children, is faced with a terrible problem. She must move her family to their summer quarters immediately, or face almost certain death. But her youngest son, Timothy, lies ill with pneumonia and must not be moved. Fortunately, she encounters the rats of NIMH, an extraordinary breed of highly intelligent creatures, who come up with a brilliant solution to her dilemma. And Mrs. Frisby in turn renders them a great service.