The Church Mouse by Graham Oakley

The Church Mouse

Written by Graham Oakley

5+ readers   Bookshelf Essentials   3+ readers   
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The Lovereading4Kids comment

A brilliant picture book thankfully now back in print. The stunning, detailed and humorous illustrations tell the entertaining story of how Sampson the church cat and Arthur the church mouse take over the local church despite the reservations of the congregation! Every picture is stuffed full of tiny details to pore over. This is one of the Lovereading4kids ‘Must Read Essentials’. To view others in this category, then click here.

The Good Book Guide logo The Good Book Guide Review. Sampson the Church Cat had heard so many sermons about the meek being blessed that the Church Mice in the vestry were safe from his attentions, though his eyes gleamed...Witty text and humorous pictures crammed with detail provide a delightful satire on life at its most parochial.


The Church Mouse by Graham Oakley

Open this lavishly produced collector's item and rediscover the first heart-warming story in Graham Oakley's classic series, which won the New York Times Best Illustrated Children's Book and was nominated for the Kate Greenaway Medal.

When Arthur invites the other mice to live in the church, it doesn't take long for people to notice the rodent population explosion! It will take some very brave mice and one fairly courageous cat to persuade the townsfolk to welcome the new members of the congregation.


“Sometimes a book arrives that transports you back to your childhood… Oakley’s glorious illustrations are packed so full of detail and humour that something new is discovered with each reading.” - The Bookseller

About the Author

Graham Oakley was born on the 27th of August 1929 in Shrewsbury, Shropshire, son of Thomas and Flora (Madelay) Oakley. Between 1947-49, Graham Oakley served in the British Army. He attended the Warrington Art school in 1950, and then worked with London repertory companies as a scenic artist 1950-55. From 1955-57 he was a design assistant at the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden, worked at Crawford's Advertising Agency from 1960-62, and then as a set designer for films and series at BBC-TV 1962-67 (including How Green Was My Valley, Nicholas Nickleby, Treasure Island, and Softly, Softly).

He had started illustrating books in the late 50s, and became a free-lance author and illustrator after his stint at the BBC. The Church Mouse was published in 1972.

"I was going to open with a high view on top of the town and a series of stories about each building, starting with the church and moving on to the library and the town hall, but the first book, The Church Mouse was so successful that I never got to the library."

These days Graham Oakley lives in Lyme Regis and is mostly retired. His current project is a version of Beauty and the Beast done with Pre-Rafaelite style illustrations.

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Book Info


48 pages
Interest Age: 4+


Graham Oakley
More books by Graham Oakley


Templar Publishing

Publication date

23rd October 2009




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