Tuesday, March 14, 2006


by Barbara Wersba

"This is the story of a writer and a reader. The writer is a person. The reader is a rat. They share an old house on Long Island, but have never met. Walter, the rat, would love to know Miss Pomeroy, the writer. Miss Pomeroy is an irritable recluse and has no desire to know anyone. How these two lonely creatures discover one another is the essence of this story."

After they meet, and have begun corresponding, "Walter wrote a brief letter to Miss Pomeroy.

Dear Miss Pomeroy, I am saddened by the things I do not know. There are hundreds--thousands--of books in the world and I will never be able to read all of them. I am old.


Miss Pomeroy replied promptly.

Walter: I understand how you feel. But why the self-pity. I am old too, and ignorant, and yet I do my best. It is all a person--or a rat--can do.


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