The thirteenth book in the Freddy the Pig series of humorous novels about the talking animals of the Bean Farm in upper New York State has a wintery theme. Jerry the rhinoceros from the Boomschmidt Circus has turned up at the Bean farm in winter with a story of hard times for their friend Mr. Boomschmidt, who has had to disband the circus, and send his animals out to forage for themselves, due to lack of funds to feed them, because his money has been stolen. Meanwhile, in nearby Centerboro, townsfolk and businesses are being troubled by hundreds of mice who’ve come in from the cold and are making a mess by chewing up everything.
Freddy hears of a lion seen and being hunted in the town of Tallmanville, south of them, and thinks it might be their friend Leo, from the circus. He and Jinx head there to try to help him, and discover Leo is being held prisoner in a pet shop. They also meet a gang of hungry cats looking for homes and food. Freddy sees some ways to get everyone what they want, but he and Jinx also become involved in finding other Boomschmidt animals and reuniting them, as well as helping Mr. Boomschmidt recover his money. Eventually, after an exciting animal race at a racetrack, and an invasion of the thief’s home, things get sorted out.
Recommended, as always, these are great fun.