Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Eeny, Meeny, Miney Mole

Eeny, Meeny, Miney Mole

Jane Yolen
Illustrator:  Kathryn Brown 
Picture Book
For ages 4 and up
Crocodile Books, 2018   ISBN: 978-1623719869

Eeny, Meeny and Miney Mole live deep underground in a place where there is no night and day, no summer and winter. All year round life in their burrows is the same and this is how they like it. One day, when she is out exploring and digging tunnels, Eeny meets a worm. The worm tells Eeny that in the world Up Above “things are both dark and light.” Meeny and Miney are appalled at this suggestion and warn their little sister that she should not “trust passing worms.”

Despite her sisters’ protestations, Eeny cannot help thinking that there must be something to what the worm told her. What would a world with light and dark look like, she wonders. Is light like a blanket or a thread?

As Eeny continues her explorations underground, she meets other creatures, and they tell her that in the Up Above there is not only light and dark, but there is also summer and winter, and night and day. Each new piece of information is rejected by her sisters, but Meeny thinks and thinks about what she has been told until she decides that she has to find out for herself what Up Above is really like.

Jane Yolen is a master at creating stories which are both entertaining and thought-provoking. She has certainly done this in this lovely picture book in which a little mole ignores the fears of her older sisters. Instead she chooses to take matters into her own paws, overcoming her own fears and seeking the truth. What she finds is more splendid than she imagined, and she returns home richer and wiser from her experiences. Yolen gives her readers a sense of how wonderful and beautiful our “Up Above” world is when see through the eyes of one who has never seen it.