The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents by Terry Pratchett
Teenage pipe player Keith, along Maurice the cat and his band of intelligent rats, perform the ultimate con in Pratchett’s take on the classic fable of the Pied Piper. They go from town to town pretending to be the plague so that Keith can offer his services to lure the rats out. The rats, who all have very distinct and likable personalities, decide that they no longer feel comfortable scamming people, and decide to do one last con before settling down. However, when they get to Bad Blintz to do the final scam, they find themselves in danger with sinister ratcatchers and in over their heads.
VERDICT: This book is the first of Pratchett’s Discworld’s book that’s aimed for children, and it has some dark tones that may make it unsuitable for younger children. Overall it’s humorous, fast-paced, and a fun read that middle schoolers will love.
Pratchett, T. (2001). The amazing maurice and his educated rodents. New York, NY: HarperCollins.