That’s right, a five pistachio nut review of Are We Nuts? by Gisela Hausmann. In this modern fable, pistachio nuts are like gold. They are better than review stars! This is my five star (pistachio nut) review of this charming book.

Want to know more about the author? Click here for the recent author interview with Gisela Hausmann,


Gisela Hausmann’s fabulous fable should be required reading for all ages, but particularly young people. Indeed, it would be a good thing if it was on the reading curriculum at schools.

I pre-ordered this book and looked forward to reading it. I wasn’t disappointed. It is original, with a nod to Orwell’s ‘Animal Farm.’ It is well-written in simple, clear language but with such a powerful message.

Yes, it’s about squirrels, and I must congratulate the author on such an astute choice of mammal to use as the “vehicle” for her message. They are not only cute but are also intelligent and non-aggressive.

Through this fable, the author parodies much of what ails modern society. She takes aim at global warming, the malign influence of powerful lobbyists, the secrecy of big government, and the current benchmarks of democracy that seem so far removed from the original principles of the “Founding Fathers.” There are also sly but accurate digs at other current societal ills such as racism.

The author imbues the squirrels with great characters through her writing. There is the old and wise Great-Grandpa, and Harry, his great grandson, Harry’s friend Sean just to mention a few. As the blurb says, “After the Great Disastrous Flood recedes, squirrel greats George Squirrelton and Benjamin Franknut convince the surviving squirrels that they have to organize themselves to survive under the difficult conditions. They form the Sciurus States on the Eastern Seaboard.” Its capital is Nuttington and is the seat of power in the form of “The Tribe Council.” Its role is supposed to protect all squirrels. But, it comes to the notice of some squirrel citizens that self-interest appears to more predominant than democracy in action in the form of “The Square Deal for Squirrels.”

Ms. Hausmann coins some wonderful names for the characters such as Steve I’Squirrel (an entrepreneur), president Theo Roosquirrel, Gary Logisquir, the Sciurus States’ nut-checkers champion, John F Kennesquirrel, and Maggie Carnegiesquir. I just laughed out loud at these names.

The whole book was fun. It entertained me immensely. I also found the reference to Twitter, known here as Kuks&Quaas (apparently, they are squirrel noises – not Tweets!) witty and hilarious. The author even introduces us to hashtags such as #nuts. The expletives took the form of utterances like “Holy pistachio!” It all added to the fun of the story.

At 102 pages, it is a short read, but ‘Animal Farm’ was only a tad longer. In any event, short or not, the sign of a good read is satisfaction on reaching the end. I was utterly satisfied by that time.


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