Beginner readers will find an amiable group of animals in Anna Alter’s simple chapter book series. Violet the chicken, Henry the mouse, Emma the squirrel, Fernando the rabbit and Wilbur the cat welcome a new neighbor to their apartment building. Mili has just arrived from Hawaii. Through mishaps and trials the Sprout Street gang discovers what true friendship means and learns to compromise and care for each other.

Black and white sketches scattered throughout the pages make this an inviting book for children new to chapter format. One oddity may require explanation. Mili spends some “me time” alone in her apartment, a potentially selfish concept that seems out of place in a story for this age group.

A former teacher, Jennifer Minicus is currently a full-time wife and mother.

Jennifer Minicus

Jennifer Minicus lives in New Jersey with her husband and son. A former French, Latin and mathematics teacher, Jennifer currently enjoys the responsibilities of a "domestic engineer", particularly making...