One day a little girl of colour hops off a cocoa box into Circleen’s world. Her name is Coco and she looks exactly like Circleen – only she has black skin, curly hair and wears a crown. She is a princess, and she tells Circleen that she comes from the country where chocolate grows on the trees. Now, that’s a place Circleen’s two friends, Ingolf and Frederik, would love to visit. Granddad knows Africa like the back of his hand, and so they set off on his aeroplane, taking OSWALD along too: a teeny-weeny, fiery-tempered rhinoceros who’s sick and tired of being bossed around by the big ones. He causes our friends no end of trouble. Circleen, Princess Coco and this wild little rhinoceros give us a story of friendship and the trials and tribulations of being the little one.
CIRCLEEN – Circleen is an elf and although elves are ageless you’d be forgiven for thinking she was about six. She is wise and moralizing, just like a grown-up. She is always helpful; she’s the one who looks out for the others and she is extremely good at untangling the muddles her pals Ingolf and Fredrik so often get them all into.
COCO – An elf like Circleen, just black. Her limbs are a bit stiff because she’s spent her life on a box of Princess Coco cocoa powder. As a result she has the airs of a princess. She wants to decide everything. Her dream is to get back to the land where chocolate grows. She’s six years old.
FREDERIK – The cheeky, cheerful, spontaneous boy mouse. A bit too quick on the draw, which often gets him into trouble. He is mad about Coco and her black curls. He’s six years old.
INGOLF – The dreamer whose feelings for cheese resemble Paddington’s for marmalade. Five years old. He and Oswald become best friends: Oswald is an ally who is also tired of being the littlest.
OSWALD – Is a rhinoceros who also appears on a brand of cocoa powder. He is four and obviously has some kind of attention deficit disorder. He quickly makes friends with INGOLF. He hates being the littlest, but him and Ingolf together make nine. His dream is to find his mum.
GRANDDAD – Is very domineering. Often sarcastic. Hates children and the bother they cause. Basically he is all right. But you can never be sure.
KAREN – An ancient white mouse who lives beside the lion pen. She is proud. She has taught herself lion-taming and she fancies Granddad. She is distantly related to Karen Blixen (Isaac Dinesen), celebrated author of Out of Africa.
ARNOLD, rhinoceros – An affable rhinoceros. Comfort-eats because he is so lonely. Ritz and Razt keep him in chocolate. They take advantage of him.
MANGO, parrot – A bird on speed. Knows everyone and everything about the zoo. He dreams of being an ambulance bird but he always shows up too late. He leads us around the various locations.
RITZ and RATZ – Two giant rats, gangsterish in appearance. Well-padded. They partake hugely of the chocolate they collect for ARNOLD. They use Arnold to scare the mice if the mice fail to hand over the bulk of the chocolate they make.
A MOUSE FAMILY OF COLOUR – consisting of mum and her two daughters, Affi (three years old) and Fifi (six). Two perky girls who help to turn the beans from the cacao pods growing in the hot house into chocolate.
Dubbed in Slovenian language.