Ralph S. Mouse lives in a mouse-hole in room 215 at the Mountain View Inn. Ralph's main ambition is to someday make his way down to the first floor and outside to find some food, but Ralph's mother is a worrier and Ralph isn't responsible or old enough yet to make that trip. Things change dramatically for Ralph when a young boy named Keith shows up with his shiny toy cars and motorcycle. Ralph being curious as a mouse most oftentimes is, decides to investigate further. What he doesn't expect is to tumble down into a wastebasket and get himself trapped. Lucky for Ralph, Keith really likes mice and is more then willing to help him to get out. Soon the two find that they can communicate and Keith helps Ralph's dream of riding a motorcycle come true.
I remember reading lots of Beverly Cleary books growing up, I loved Ramona and Beezus, and Ellen Tebbits was one of my favorites. I can't say I recall reading much of Henry Huggins or the Ralph S. Mouse series though, so it was nice to recapture some of that feeling I so enjoyed from the other books. I loved how Cleary captures the desire of Keith and Ralph both wanting to be seen as responsible by their parents and how wanting to grow up too fast isn't as important as being patient. There are many nice messages about friendship and being truthful, but the two I most enjoyed were the one of keeping ones word and when Ralph's mom keeps talking about "tipping room service," (Keith, for all the food that he has been bringing them.). A wonderful story that I know I would have loved reading when I was around eight or nine. Favorite line: "Ralph really felt sorry for the boy, hampered as he was by his youth and his mother." My review copy was from an end of year book swap at school.