On Our Shelves Now
Meet Fergus and Zeke — a lovable classroom mouse and his streetwise buddy — in a brand-new series perfect for early readers.
Fergus loves being the class pet in Miss Maxwell’s classroom. He does everything the students do, until the teacher plans a field trip to the museum — without Fergus! He doesn’t want to miss the fun, so he stows away in a backpack and sets off for an adventure. When he arrives at the museum, Fergus finds it a little overwhelming — huge and full of exciting things to see. Luckily, he meets a new friend, Zeke, who knows the ropes, and together they explore everything from moon rocks to butterflies to a giant dinosaur skeleton (“A playground!” says Zeke). But when the time comes for the bus to leave, Fergus is worried that he’ll be left behind. Will he make it back to school to take his place as class pet once more?
About the Author
Kate Messner is an award-winning author whose books for kids have been New York Times Notable, Junior Library Guild, IndieBound, and Bank Street College of Education Best Books selections. She lives on Lake Champlain.
Heather Ross is an illustrator and fabric designer. She lives in New York City and the Catskill Mountains.
The four chapters of this easy reader zip right along with a straightforward, breezy plot and two charming, mischievous mice leading the way...The art’s peppy lines and occasional plays on perspective support but never overwhelm the text. Short sentences, some stealthy repetition, and a host of sight words give plenty of scaffolding to young readers, and this might also make a diverting readaloud before a class trip.
—Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
Messner's first in a new early-reader series (Fergus and Zeke will visit the school science fair next) is divided into four chapters and meant for those who are confident enough in their reading abilities to begin to make the transition to chapter books. Ross' digital illustrations add interest and break up the text, giving readers a mouse's-eye view of the museum and its fascinating exhibits...Here's to more adventures for Fergus and Zeke!
Messner (the Ranger in Time books) lets readers live out their Night at the Museum fantasies through Fergus and Zeke’s explorations...Ross’s (Grimelda: The Very Messy Witch) energetic full-color cartoons run wild with the museum-as-playground theme, and Zeke’s decision to join Fergus in the classroom neatly sets up their next adventure.
Messner’s text is approachable and creative, and builds suspense that will keep readers excited until the end. Ross’ illustrations expand the text and breathe life into two adorable mice and the museum experience. This first book in a new series is sure to be a hit.
Small children of a compliant nature will find a kindred spirit in the mouse-hero of Kate Messner’s entertaining easy-reader ‘Fergus and Zeke’ (Candlewick, 52 pages, $14.99)...Cheery illustrations by Heather Ross add zip to this educational excursion for 5- to 8-year-olds.
—The Wall Street Journal
The vocabulary is accessible to readers moving beyond the simplest texts and ready for a more complex narrative. Ross’s cheery digital line drawings mirror the text and enhance readers’ understanding. An enjoyable addition to chapter book collections, especially where heavily illustrated works at this level are needed.
—School Library Journal
Kate Messner has written a great story about friendship and how to solve problems that beginning readers will want to read and enjoy frequently. This is an excellent book for all libraries—classroom and school.
—School Library Connection