Alyce Crosbie, Sales & Marketing Coordinator, reviews The Adventures of Mr Toad by Tom Moorhouse.
It’s great when classic tales are brought to life for modern-day audiences. The Adventures of Mr Toad, as retold by Tom Moorhouse, is a picture book retelling of Kenneth Grahame’s The Wind in the Willows from Toad’s point of view. Now younger readers get to join Mr Toad on his adventures, driving motorcars and escaping prison! Of course, Toad is accompanied by his old friends Mole, Ratty and Badger:
- Mole – the sweet one.
- Ratty – the jolly one.
- Badger – the slightly scary one.
- Toad – the brave, talented, clever one.
When Mr Toad’s new obsession with cars lands him in prison for theft, he manages to escape in disguise only to find stoats and weasels have taken over his home Toad Hall! Toad and his friends must come up with a plan to reclaim Toad Hall. Children of all ages will love following this fast-paced adventure and can sing-along with Toad throughout the journey, joining as he clears his throat with a ‘ahem’ (or a ‘sniff’ when he is feeling sorry for himself):
I’m the magnificent, wise Mr Toad,
the finest of drivers around on the road.
My goggles and gloves make me look rather dashing.
But I’m never quite sure why my cars keep on…
Paired with beautiful colour illustrations by David Roberts, this story will captivate young readers and keep them on the edge of their seats. Though Toad is easily distracted (and more than a little boastful), you can’t help but be charmed by him and know he essentially means well. The perfect book for reading aloud as a family, The Adventures of Mr Toad has a great message at its heart about being brave, standing up for yourself and looking out for your friends. It is a tale of friendship, adventure and laughter, and the perfect way to introduce the story and characters to young children before they move on to The Wind in the Willows.
Tom Moorhouse lives in Oxford, where he enjoys the refreshing and perpetual rain. He is somewhere in his mid-thirties. This, he has discovered, means that small white hairs now grow out of his earlobes when he’s not looking. He spends a lot of time climbing rocks. He used to play the trombone, but doesn’t any more. He is, without the slightest fear of contradiction, the world’s worst snowboarder. Ever. Tom also happens to be an ecologist, working at the University of Oxford’s Department of Zoology. As a child he devoured – not literally – just about any fantasy book going.
David Roberts was born in Liverpool. He always loved drawing from an early age and couldn’t wait to escape high school and go to art college. There he developed a keen interest in pottery and fashion and went on to study a degree in fashion design at Manchester Metropolitan University. After university he worked as a milliner and began to get work as a fashion illustrator, but always felt his true calling was in children’s book illustration.