Praise & Reviews
“My 7 year-old soccer-playing son LOVED World Cup Mouse! Once he started it, he finished in half a day. He loved the characters, the story about having a dream and even though it seems odd to others, going for it. This book is great for kids and parents to read together. I will share it! Oh, my son wants the next one in the series.”~ Brandi Chastain, US Olympic and World Cup Champion
“It’s a fun book. Louis and all his friends are funny and they always stick up for him. I was a little sad when the book was over.” ~ Leo, age 8
“This entertaining book is written in a very friendly, easy-to-read tone, with humor and a lot of dialog and action.” ~ Smart Books for Smart Kids
“The story was precious. My son loved it and the vocabulary was perfect for the target age. The story has drama, adventure, and sports. All things that will interest a young boy and delight even the reluctant reader. But it also has the themes of friendship, sportsmanship, and perseverance woven into the plot. I look forward to seeing more by this author and I know my son will enjoy reading more about Louie.” ~ Book Reviews by Tima
By Angela Decker
For the Ashland Daily Tidings
May 16, 2014
Kids, grown-ups, soccer fans and anyone who loves spunky mice with big dreams are invited to celebrate the launch of local author Richard Seidman’s book “World Cup Mouse.”
Seidman will sign books and answer questions at 11 a.m. Saturday, May 24, at Tree House Books in Ashland.
The book will debut just in time for the 2014 World Cup soccer tournament in June. Seidman, whose books for adults were published by a traditional publisher, launched an online Kickstarter campaign to raise the money he needed to self-publish his children’s story and release it before the World Cup this summer.
Seidman has loved soccer since he was a child growing up in Brooklyn, N.Y. He says two things inspired the book.
“When I was 10, I saw [famous Brazilian soccer player] Pelé play in an exhibition game in New York and it was remarkable to witness such greatness in person,” he says. “And I love mouse stories such as ‘Stuart Little,’ ‘Doctor De Soto,’ ‘Tale of Despereaux’ and ‘Norman the Doorman.’ It seemed fun to combine a mouse hero with a soccer context.”
The book’s main character is a little French mouse named Louie LaSurie, who dreams of playing for France in the World Cup. Though most humans cringe at the sight of him and most other mice tease him, the determined Louie practices soccer with a dried pea and studies every aspect of the game in order to realize his dream. “Where there’s a mouse, there’s a way,” Louie is fond of saying. Still, he’s young and plagued with self-doubts and has a quick temper, so nothing is guaranteed.
Louie makes friends, enemies and learns a few lessons along the way. Seidman says he loves the absurdity of Louie’s lofty dreams. “At the same time, I admire his crazy determination and chutzpah. He inspires me, even as he makes me laugh.”
I won’t spoil the ending by revealing whether Louie achieves his goals, but readers can expect the journey to contain loads of suspense and humor.
Louie’s story is funny and sweet in a way with which both kids and adults can easily connect. Both my children read the story and found themselves cheering for Louie, his friends and even France. Seidman has an easygoing style that doesn’t talk down to his young readers. There’s a message, of course, but it’s not in any way heavy-handed.
Seidman says he didn’t write the story with an overt message in mind, but he hopes readers will take from it a sense of delight, laughter and the spirit of play. Quoting a wise, old mouse who advises Louie LaSurie, Seidman adds, “It doesn’t matter what anyone thinks of you. It doesn’t matter if you’re a hero or a fool or even if you’re not good at it. It only matters that you pursue what you love with all your heart and try to become better.”
“World Cup Mouse” has chapters and is aimed at readers age 7 to 10, a demographic sure to enjoy the cheerful illustrations by artist Ursula Andrejczuk. Seidman, an ardent soccer fan, will donate a percentage of the profits of each book sold to organizations that support youth soccer around the world, as well as the Portland-based nonprofit Friends of the Trees.
Tree House books is located on the Ashland Plaza at 15 N. Main St., Ashland. For more information about the book signing, call 541-482-9616.
For more information about World Cup Mouse and the author, visit www.WorldCupMouse.com.