Books

Little Mouse’s Big Book Of Fears: Celebrating Fear, Not Fearing It

Written by Sheeba Manish

Everyone is scared of something.

Living with fear can make even the bravest person feel small.

Emily Gravett’s Little Mouse’s Big Book Of Fears is the essential book to help you overcome your phobias.

It has been put together by an expert on worrying, who draws on a lifetime’s experience of managing fears through the medium of doodle.

You too can overcome your fears through the use of art!

Remember! A fear faced is a fear defeated.

So begins the note in the 2008 offering from The Macmillan Children’s Books offering Little Mouse’s Big Book Of Fears by EmilyGravett. Drawing, Writing and Collage come together in this book cum journal for fearful little people everywhere. At the heart of this book is a little white mouse who quakes in fear about…almost everything.

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Little Mouse in his book of very big, real fears

Every sort of fear is recorded and no fear is too little not to be.

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The original manuscript was laced with yoghurt and bitten by the pet rats at Emily’s home in keeping with the rat theme. Rat urine stains also added to the stained finish. She used a Faber-Castell Pitt oil-based pencil for her drawings. The images were scanned and photoshopped before it achieved its final book.

All fears are documented in their Latin names and explained in English.

Teratophobia: the fear of monsters

Aichmophobia: fear of knives; who wouldn’t be, especially if they were raised on stories of farmers wives cutting off lovely pink tails with carving knives!

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Newspaper cutting collage with the dreaded ‘farmers wife’

Isolophobia: the fear of solitude; the little mouse is particularly afraid of being alone in the dark, not unlike many little and not so little kids.

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Little Mouse who is scared of the dark

Whereamiophobia: the fear of getting lost

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A map of the Isle of Fright. The real location being imaginary – in Emily Gravett’s imagination

All fears have very interesting sides. For example, Whereamiophobia has a map of The Isle of Fright. The Map shaped like a mouse points out the locations of Mount Apprehension, Tingly Spine, Great Chatter, Shaking point, Hair on End and many more. The map is truly art in itself. The rendering so real it could easily pass off as the real deal.

The Ornithophobia page has real bird feathers that were scanned and look ready to be picked up off the page.

Each page also encourages the reader to write about their fears. Little Mouse’s Big Book Of Fears is an active book. It has phobias to know and be learnt, feathers and notes to be seen and felt, a map to read and plenty of space to record fears and perhaps methods to get over them.

A great book for children with identify many fears and know that everyone has some sort of fear and many of them have proper names as well. This book can help draw out the sensitive child or even the proud one (too proud to admit) and help initiate discussions about fears and phobias. Often, this can help diminish the power and control the fear has over the child. Gravett reassures the little reader that fears are all around us and that they are not alone.

Age Range: 4 – 8 years

Grade Level: Preschool – 3

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