More Smart Animals



No sooner had I hit the “publish” button for the post on “Smart Animals” than I began to think of other books I could have, maybe should have, included in the list.  So, this afternoon, I sat down and went through a list of books that I have access to and pulled out titles of books to share with you … Far too many for one more post.  It will probably be several posts. 

Let’s start with two series of books:

Redwall series by Brian Jacques

There are more than 20 books in this series featuring the animals of Redwall Abbey.  In the first book, Redwall, Cluny the Scourge, a rat, and his horde show up, determined to capture the abbey for themselves.  One mouse from the abbey decides to go in search of the sword of Martin the Warrior.  He encounters sparrows, cats, and an owl, among other animals in his quest.

So far, I’ve listened to five of the books of the series.  The audio versions are a Full Cast production so that each character definitely has a distinctive voice.  I’ve enjoyed each book.  Redwall and Martin The Warrior are among my favorites, so far.  :-)

There is a pile of cd cases next to my desk, though — I ordered as many of the books of the series as I could find through the local public library consortium’s online catalog (how’s that for a mouthful and a tongue twister?) … and they all showed up at once;  lots of listening to get through in a few short weeks.  But I expect lots of good listens!

Author, Brian Jacques, was interviewed by John Scieszka as part of the Thalia Kids’ Book Club series.  It is not an exceptional interview – Jacques laughs way too much.  But he does tell about growing up in Liverpool during WWII.  He told things about that time I did not know — like, I knew London had been bombed but didn’t know the Germans had also bombed other port cities.  He uses terms most kids won’t understand, and maybe many parents — and maybe this will encourage them to learn about life at that time and in Great Britain.    You can get a copy of the interview at

Mistmantle series by M.I. McAllister

Ah, I must admit, I haven’t listened to any of these books yet.  I did listen to the sample at Audible and decided to add Urchin of the Riding Stars to my library.  Then I visited the library online catalog to look for the rest of the series in audio.  There are two more in my wish list for the next time I make a book request from the consortium inter-library loan system.  Urchin is a squirrel who fell out of a tree as a baby and has grown up near the castle.  These are his adventures.  Based on the sample, I expect to enjoy these books as much as the Redwall books.

Reviewers at Amazon say they feel this series is superior to the Redwall series.  For more info about the author, check out wikipedia.

Another “Series” to Check Out

Humphrey stories by Betty Birney

Humphrey is a classroom hamster.  He gets to go home with various students from the class on weekends.  He has lots of adventures and helps a lot of people, including the school janitor. He tells the stories, too.  Delightful tales.

So far, I’ve listened to The World According to Humphrey and Friendship According to Humphrey.  There are six more books in the series.

One Last “Series” of a Fun Animal but Maybe Not So “Smart”

This is a series of picture books about Walter … um … Walter the Farting Dog, by William Kotzwinkle, Glenn Murray, Elizabeth Gundy, to be exact. He isn’t so smart as stinky.  But he always seems to save the day.  Of the three books of the five (or six depending on the list you use) of the Walter books I’ve encountered, my favorite is Walter the Farting Dog Goes on a Cruise.  His adventures are sure to make children giggle and parents smile (if ruefully — why is it that such stinky subjects can be so fun(ny)?).

For more information on the books in this series, check here, and for info on William Kotzwinkle, check here.

There are LOTS and lots of great books featuring animals.  I will, however, wait a little before I spring another list of them on you.

In the meantime, Have Great Reads!


4 responses »

  1. More fantastic kids book …. still I think Astrid Lindgren have made the most fantastic kids books so fare – Pippi .. and Emil. Haven’t read any of the modern once – but my vote goes to Astrid there is no story teller like her for kids.

    • I hate to admit it — I never got to read Pippi Longstocking! In grade school, our librarian read the first chapter to us one day. Of course, my best friend beat me to the shelves to get the book and check it out. I really don’t remember any other class trips to the school library and never had an opportunity to check it out after that (that I remember) …
      I was in junion high school by the time I got into the habit of asking my mom to take me to a public library every Friday night as we headed off to do the weekly shopping trip. By then I either felt I was too old for Pippi or had forgottten all about her.
      HMMMM … I now live in a very Scandinanvian section of the USA and should ahve no problem finding Pippi books in the inter-library loan catalog! COOL! A new set of books to read. (Have I admitted that I LOVE children’s books?)

      • You have missed something, Girlfriend! Her books are so funny and well written. No, I haven’t noticed that you have admit to to love children’s books – but it shows. *smile
        Here you can read about my favorite book, – Emil – one of the most funniest children’s books. And also “Karlsson on the roof” –

  2. Both Emil and Karlsson sound like wonderful characters. Neither are available through our library system but i did find a few at Amazon … THANKS for suggesting them. They sound wonderful!

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