by Lowell H. Press
The König is a tyrant. His subjects are starving. And all-out war is fast approaching. Will a pair of young, courageous brothers save their kingdom? When an emissary sent by the König himself stops by the remote mouse colony of Long Meadow, the peaceful life Sommer and Nesbit have shared is turned upside down-and the brothers are catapulted into separate death-defying adventures. Sommer, levelheaded and clever, is ordered to the palace to join the König’s illustrious Eagle Guard as it prepares to face a full-scale invasion by the nefarious Emperor Wolfsmilch and his army of a hundred thousand forest mice. Meanwhile, the small but spirited Nesbit is banished to the Forest of Lost Life for insulting the König, and must dodge hungry predators at every turn. The brothers struggle to reunite and defy the oppressors who threaten everyone and everything they have ever known and loved. But time is quickly running out for both of them-and the fate of the kingdom hinges on one last, daring mission. Set against the magnificent backdrop of Schönbrunn Palace in Vienna, Austria, The Kingdom of the Sun and Moon is an action-packed adventure story for young readers and adults alike. Ages 10 and up.
The colony’s king cares little for his subjects and is mostly interested in taking the food they save throughout the year for his own use during the winter months.Two brothers, Sommer and Nesbit, discover that all is not what it seems, including the king’s purported fear of a pending invasion of the colony by a massive army of woodland mice.
Sommer, who is drafted by the king’s minions for a suicide mission on the colony’s behalf and Nesbit, who insults the king and flees into the dangerous forest, take different approaches to survival and justices. Sommer becomes a cadet commander, while Nesbit becomes known as either a worker of magic of an exceptionally lucky mouse.
Set in a 1700s world, “The Kingdom of the Sun and Moon” is a delightful story with well-drawn characters and an underlying culture and myth that will delight young readers while keeping their parents engaged whenever this derring-do yarn is shared around the dinner table or at at bedtime.
Press used his visit to the Schönbrunn Palace to great advantage in developing a setting for his story that is well suited to the mice colony’s culture and history as well as to the people and cats who appear through the tale for better or worse.
Sommer and Nesbit of the Long Meadow Colony are tiny, as mice go, but they make up for it in bravery and guile.