Emmy and The Incredible Shrinking Rat by Lynne Jonell
Ten-year-old Emmy Addison is a good girl all of the time. The class pet rat convinces her that she is so good that people don't listen to her. Of course, only Emmy can hear the rat talk. Emmy used to live above the bookstore that her father and mother owned. They inherited a big sum of money from a great-great uncle. Now the parents are always gone on airplane trips. She hardly ever sees her parents and is left with a weird nanny, Miss Barmy.
When the cool boy in the class, Joe, can also hear the rat, Emmy has help in solving the mystery of Miss Barmy and the rats. It is Joe who discovers that the second bite by the rat shrinks the bitten person to the size of an action figure. It is not the rat that shrinks as implied by the title.
This book has several elements of humor without the scary parts being too frightening. You will be impressed with Lynne Jonell's first novel, but you might remember some of her picture books. What is awesome about this book is that she has a rat falling from a tree on the border of every page. It turns into a flip-book and the rat eventually falls into Emmy's hand. You will flip right through this three hundred and fifty page book!