Friday, May 18, 2007

Book review: The Mouse That Roared by Leonard Wibberley

We are spending part of the weekend at my brother’s house. When I visit family and friends I like to spend a few minutes and look through their bookshelves. You can tell a lot about people by the kinds of books they read. I’ve been checking out my brother’s books.

Last night I happened across The Mouse That Roared by Leonard Wibberly in one of my brother’s bookshelves. (Yes, he had a nice collection of books.) Years ago I had watched part of the movie version with Peter Sellers. It seemed like a pleasant movie, but for some reason I had never watched the whole movie. I started the book last night and finished today.

The book takes place in the 1950s, during the height of the Cold War. The book creates a country named Grand Fenwick up in the Alps of Europe. It was founded 600 years ago by an Englishman. This small country is five by seven miles with 4,500 people. The country is suffering economically. An American company is illegally ce making the exact same wine that Grand Fenwick sells. Grand Fenwick tries to go through diplomatic channels for redress and is ignored. Finally they decide to declare war on the United States, with the expectation that they would lose, but that the United States would invest money into them. There was precedent for this, after World War II the United States spent billions helping Germany and Japan rebuild.

Since this is fiction there is little surprise that Grand Fenwick wins the war about two thirds of the way through the book. The rest of the book is about how Grand Fenwick handles its unexpected victory.

I enjoyed the book. It was fun and light hearted. I don’t plan to track down the other four books. Maybe some day I’ll happen across one of the sequels.

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Sherry said...

Serendipity in finding and reading books is lots of fun. I enjoy the treasures I find "by accident" sometimes more than the ones that have been over-sold to me.

Carrie said...

I had heard of this book but didn't know what it was about so I appreciated seeing your review of it. Thank you.