The most recommended rat books

Who picked these books? Meet our 20 experts.

20 authors created a book list connected to rats, and here are their favorite rat books.
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Book cover of Ratscalibur

Joan Marie Galat Author Of Mortimer: Rat Race to Space

From my list on children’s stories with rat or mouse adventures.

Who am I?

Since writing a middle-grade novel about a lab rat living on the International Space Station, I was curious to see how other authors tackled the challenge of creating stories about talking rats and mice. After all, these rodents are not generally popular in real life. What exciting approaches did others use to get past this dilemma? I wanted to see how they balanced the ideal—being true to the nature of a species—while constructing original characters in challenging situations. Analyzing how other writers succeed is always useful.

Joan's book list on children’s stories with rat or mouse adventures

Joan Marie Galat Why did Joan love this book?

Ratscalibur reveals what happens when a ragician turns grade seven student—Joey—into a rat. Joey becomes Ratscalibur when he pulls a spork from a dehydrated scone. The other rats are convinced he can help save their kingdom but Joey is not so confident. Still, if he wants the chance to become a boy again, he must help the rodents fight their devious enemies. Rich in humor, this book’s charm also comes from illuminating a character who is quite certain he’s not meant to be a hero. This novel is full of original twists that will keep readers turning pages.

By Josh Lieb,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Ratscalibur as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

From the New York Times bestselling author of I Am A Genius of Unspeakable Evil and I Want to Be Your Class President

“A witty mash-up of favorite fantasy motifs.”—New York Times Book Review

“Ratscalibur is funny, it’s scary, and it’s sweet, like life. But it has talking rats and magic, so it’s better than life.”—Jimmy Fallon

“Full of clever dialogue and hilarious puns...Don’t be surprised if this novel achieves best-seller status.” —Booklist

“The only way I could’ve liked this more is if I were eleven.”—Ira Glass

“A charming take on an old favorite.”—Publishers Weekly
 

When Joey is bitten by…


Book cover of 7 Steps to Freedom II: How to Escape the American Rat Race

Robert Skrob Author Of Retention Point: The Single Biggest Secret to Membership and Subscription Growth for Associations, SAAS, Publishers, Digital Access, Subscription Boxes and all Membership and Subscription-Based Businesses

From my list on growing fans who become your best customers.

Who am I?

I am an expert in customer retention and membership growth with 30 years of experience working with businesses across more than 80 industries. As the President of Be Unleavable, Inc., I specialize in helping subscription companies grow their membership and create loyal, dedicated customer bases. I have authored several books on the subject, including the widely-acclaimed Retention Point, which teaches businesses how to foster a group of excited fans who become their best customers and recommend the business to others. My focus is helping businesses foster long-term relationships with their customers rather than having a series of “one-night stands.”

Robert's book list on growing fans who become your best customers

Robert Skrob Why did Robert love this book?

7 Steps to Freedom is a foundational book that reveals the key economic drivers business owners must balance in order to achieve growth.

Although the book primarily promotes a business model using direct mail marketing for customer acquisition, its lessons are just as relevant in today's digital marketing landscape.

The book encourages business leaders to shift their focus from tweaking ad creatives to reduce customer acquisition costs, to redesigning their businesses to increase customer value.

By doing so, they can afford higher customer acquisition costs and grow much faster than by merely lowering that cost.

7 Steps to Freedom stands out as a unique resource that elucidates this crucial concept in an easily digestible manner for business owners. If you're looking to understand the economic drivers that influence your business's growth potential, this book is a must-read.

By Benjamin D Suarez,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked 7 Steps to Freedom II as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

7 Steps to Freedom II: How to Escape the American Rat Race by Benjamin D Suarez.


Book cover of '48

Daniel Cotton Author Of Life Among The Dead

From my list on the end of the world and being the last person on earth.

Who am I?

What would I do if I was the last person on Earth? I have wondered this since I was a child after watching apocalyptic movies; Damnation Alley, Night of the Comet, and of course the Romero Living Dead movies. Would I be able to make it? Could I not only survive but contend with whatever menaces there were to face be they aliens, monsters, the living dead, or the actual living. My imagination would run loose, putting myself in the shoes of the characters to see how I’d fare, what would I do differently. These little escapes grew and matured into my own stories.

Daniel's book list on the end of the world and being the last person on earth

Daniel Cotton Why did Daniel love this book?

It’s been a while since I have read this one but it has always been one of my favorites. An American pilot is stranded in post World War 2 Britain. In this reality, moments before defeat, Adolf Hitler released a biological weapon that decimated the population. A hemorrhagic virus that attacks certain blood types, those not killed initially are slowly dying and desperate for a cure that they think is in the main character's blood since he is unaffected. The action in this book is some of the best I have ever read as the ‘Black Shirts’ chase our hero through the war-torn city.

By James Herbert,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked '48 as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'48 by international bestseller and Master of Horror, James Herbert, explores a horrifying alternative end to the Second World War.

In 1945, Hitler unleashed the Blood Death on Britain as his final act of vengeance.

Those who died at once were the lucky ones. The really unfortunate took years. The survivors - people like me, who had the blood group that kept us safe from the disease - were now targets for those who believed our blood could save them.

I survived for three years. I lived alone, spending my days avoiding the fascist Blackshirts who wanted my blood for…


Book cover of King Rat

Misha Handman Author Of Pawns and Phantoms

From my list on fantasy that draws from older stories.

Who am I?

So much of our culture and our fiction comes from taking older stories and ideas and reworking, blending, and adapting them into new forms. This cultural mixture has gifted us with some of the greatest works of English literature, and I’ve always been surprised and delighted to discover what people can pull out of older works and make. It’s why my first novels have followed the theme, and why I will always have time to check out a new story that builds on older ideas to create something new. 

Misha's book list on fantasy that draws from older stories

Misha Handman Why did Misha love this book?

China Mievelle’s first work, a retelling of the story of the Pied Piper from the point of view of those that he commands, is a dark and gruesome story that gripped me from the first page. Difficult family relations, grim mysteries, and an ancient fable brought into the modern worldthis book has it all! 

By China Miéville,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked King Rat as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Something is stirring in London's dark, stamping out its territory in brickdust and blood. Something has murdered Saul Garamond's father, and left Saul to pay for the crime.

But a shadow from the urban waste breaks into Saul's prison cell and leads him to freedom. A shadow called King Rat, who reveals Saul's royal heritage, a heritage that opens a new world to Saul, the world below London's streets--a heritage that also drags Saul into King Rat's plan for revenge against his ancient enemy,. With drum 'n' bass pounding the backstreets, Saul must confront the forces that would use him,…


Book cover of The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents

Jason R. Richter Author Of LIFE in the 23rd Century

From Jason's 3 favorite reads in 2023.

Who am I?

Author Analog Monotone Sarcastic Left handed Troublemaker

Jason's 3 favorite reads in 2023

Jason R. Richter Why did Jason love this book?

When Sir Terry passed away in 2015, I was devastated. I met him once at a book signing in Denver. The only person I’ve ever seen live that got more laughs per minute while on stage was George Carlin. Sir Terry was this beautiful, mischievous presence.

There were a few of his books that I hadn’t read that I held off on reading because I wanted to save them. I’ve read all of the Discworld novels several times, or so I thought. I thought this book was a stand-alone that wasn’t based in the Discworld. When I realized it was a Discworld novel, I couldn’t put it down. I read it all in one sitting. It was like receiving a letter from a beloved, long-past uncle. 

By Terry Pratchett,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 12, 13, 14, and 15.

What is this book about?

IT'S A RAT-EAT-RAT WORLD . . .

Every town on Discworld knows the stories about rats and pipers, and Maurice - a streetwise tomcat - leads a band of educated ratty friends (and a stupid kid) on a nice little earner. Piper plus rats equals lots and lots of money.

Until they run across someone playing a different tune.

Now he and his rats must learn a new concept: evil . . .


Book cover of The Rat Prince: A New Twist on Cinderella

Joan Marie Galat Author Of Mortimer: Rat Race to Space

From my list on children’s stories with rat or mouse adventures.

Who am I?

Since writing a middle-grade novel about a lab rat living on the International Space Station, I was curious to see how other authors tackled the challenge of creating stories about talking rats and mice. After all, these rodents are not generally popular in real life. What exciting approaches did others use to get past this dilemma? I wanted to see how they balanced the ideal—being true to the nature of a species—while constructing original characters in challenging situations. Analyzing how other writers succeed is always useful.

Joan's book list on children’s stories with rat or mouse adventures

Joan Marie Galat Why did Joan love this book?

This book is an enchanting takeoff on the Cinderella story. You might think you know what happens the night of the ball, but the author takes you in twisty new directions that explore things you can’t help but be curious about once they are presented to you. For example, how does a rat feel about being turned into a human for a night? Told through the voices of both Cinderella and Prince Char, readers meet a rat who turns out to be wise and compassionate, alongside a Cinderella that is fearless and inspiring. I like how the characters are richly developed, and the way humor and originality flow throughout this quick-paced, gripping adventure.

By Bridget Hodder,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Rat Prince as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Before Cinderella's stepmother and stepsisters moved into Lancastyr Manor, she was known as the beautiful Lady Rose de Lancastyr. Then her stepmother forced her to become a kitchen maid and renamed her. At first the rats of the manor figure her for a lack-wit and take pity on her by bringing her food and a special family heirloom. But when Cinderella's stepmother finds a way to prevent her from attending the ball, the rats join forces to help her. The night of the ball is filled with magic and secrets - not least of all who Lady Rose will choose…


Book cover of The Short and Incredibly Happy Life of Riley

Adam Wallace Author Of How to Catch a Leprechaun

From my list on kids living a great life.

Who am I?

I am obsessed with personal development, having attended seminars to walk across hot coals and jump from crazy heights to test my limits, and I have read hundreds of books and watched hundreds of videos on self-improvement. But sometimes the best lessons come in fiction, and kid’s books do this so wonderfully. And they are a lot quicker to read and absorb! They also teach with humour, rhythm, and joy, and can change a child’s life simply by letting them escape into a world of laughter and joy, expanding their imaginations, and letting them absorb the lessons, sometimes without even realising it.

Adam's book list on kids living a great life

Adam Wallace Why did Adam love this book?

The Short and Incredibly Happy Life of Riley is a book that, well, the first time I read it my mind was blown. This is a self-help book for all humans in a picture book. It takes our thirst to live forever, to always want more, be more, see more, do more, look better, and compares that with the wonderful Riley, who is happy with some fruit and maybe a couple of slugs on Tuesday or Friday.

He likes a little stick that can scratch his back.
He looks like Riley. Why would he want to look like anything else?

This is a beautifully written and illustrated book on being grateful for what we have.

Book cover of Walter: The Story of a Rat

Joan Marie Galat Author Of Mortimer: Rat Race to Space

From my list on children’s stories with rat or mouse adventures.

Who am I?

Since writing a middle-grade novel about a lab rat living on the International Space Station, I was curious to see how other authors tackled the challenge of creating stories about talking rats and mice. After all, these rodents are not generally popular in real life. What exciting approaches did others use to get past this dilemma? I wanted to see how they balanced the ideal—being true to the nature of a species—while constructing original characters in challenging situations. Analyzing how other writers succeed is always useful.

Joan's book list on children’s stories with rat or mouse adventures

Joan Marie Galat Why did Joan love this book?

This is the tale of a writer and reader who share a house. The writer, however, is a reclusive human and the reader a rat longing for a friend. The author’s approach is clever and subtle. And while I’m naturally drawn to books about writers, it was the rat that captivated me. I read this book rather quickly. I had to know if Walter could find his way through the difficulty of loneliness. 

By Barbara Wersba, Donna Diamond (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Walter as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 9, 10, 11, and 12.

What is this book about?

Two lonely creatures find that companionship is closer than they thought in this charming tale of friendship

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. How these two lonely creatures discover one another is the essence of this story.


Book cover of Rat Fair

Benjamin Giroux Author Of I Am Odd, I Am New

From my list on debut children's books of 2021.

Who am I?

Over the past several months, I have had the pleasure to work with amazing authors who, like me, have debut children's books that were released in 2021. These books range in topics, from overcoming your fears to transgender to history, to cute rats that will let your imagination run wild. Being a kid myself, my parents read every night to me. These are books that like mine, are filled with representation that was lacking in those books that were read to me.

Benjamin's book list on debut children's books of 2021

Benjamin Giroux Why did Benjamin love this book?

This almost wordless picture book has some of my favorite artwork. The illustrations of the cute rats make me smile just thinking about them. This book forces you to look at every page and use your imagination to create your own story. What would a rat fair look like? Kids will love flipping through the pages to follow the rat's journey.

By Leah Rose Kessler, Cleonique Hilsaca (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Rat Fair as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 3, 4, 5, and 6.

What is this book about?

A nearly-wordless picture book about a group of rats who mix up a sign for an Art Fair, and instead create a jolly Rat Fair. A compassionate young boy steps up to save them from the humans who would sweep their festivities away.

When a group of industrious, fun-loving rats find letters fallen from an Art Fair sign, they put the sign back together—with one small adjustment—and get to work creating a spectacular RAT FAIR. Their fair is ruined when humans sweep away everything the rats have created. Undaunted, the rats switch  gears and start working on their very own…


Book cover of The Tale of Despereaux Trade Book

Joan Marie Galat Author Of Mortimer: Rat Race to Space

From my list on children’s stories with rat or mouse adventures.

Who am I?

Since writing a middle-grade novel about a lab rat living on the International Space Station, I was curious to see how other authors tackled the challenge of creating stories about talking rats and mice. After all, these rodents are not generally popular in real life. What exciting approaches did others use to get past this dilemma? I wanted to see how they balanced the ideal—being true to the nature of a species—while constructing original characters in challenging situations. Analyzing how other writers succeed is always useful.

Joan's book list on children’s stories with rat or mouse adventures

Joan Marie Galat Why did Joan love this book?

The Tale of Despereaux is the story of an unlikely hero. It reveals what happens when an overly tiny mouse with big ears dares to be different. He is fascinated by light, music, and a book left open in the library, but his peers do not approve. When Despereaux falls in love with the princess, the other mice condemn him to the dungeon. This usually means death, but Roscuro the rat intends to harm the princess, and Despereaux is determined to stop him. I enjoyed how the motivations of the key characters were subtly revealed, then brought together in clever and surprising ways. Every detail was included for a reason, making for a most satisfying read. Unable to stop, I read this modern fairy tale in one sitting.

By Kate DiCamillo,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked The Tale of Despereaux Trade Book as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 7, 8, 9, and 10.

What is this book about?

A heartwarming young adventure story, winner of the prestigious Newbery Medal.

A deftly crafted fairy tale adventure story from a New York Times bestselling author, twice winner of the prestigious Newbery Medal. Here, reader, is the tale of a tiny, sickly mouse with unusually large ears; a mouse who takes his fate into his own hands. It is the tale of a beautiful, flaxen-haired princess who laughs often and makes everything around her seem brighter. It is the tale of a poor, deaf serving girl who entertains foolish dreams of splendour. It is a tale of impossible love, of bravery…