Who thinks it’s exciting that rats have come to live in the ground floor flat? The young bunnies do, but the other residents of Pickle Rye aren’t so sure that they want dirty, smelly rats as neighbours: rats are messy, rats steal food, rats are thieves and chew through walls.
But once the occupants of flats 2-7 have hopped and trotted and padded and clattered down to meet the new arrivals they find kind, friendly, tidy rats offering…cake.
This is a glorious romp of a book which gathers characters and pace as it travels apprehensively down the many stairs and then feasts happily at the bottom.
And as you’d expect from Sarah McIntyre it is a visual delight. Every page contains a wealth of colourful detail to discover, talk and laugh about, and which perceptively and humorously reinforces the important message of the text.
The New Neighbours is a book to return to over and over again.