From School Library Journal
Kindergarten-Grade 4–A pampered Persian shares the limelight with strays in celebration of felines. Many of the 24 entries describe their comical antics, whether they are flying across a room in pursuit of invisible creatures or assisting with household chores: "He paws at the sheets,/and claws at the spread./(My cat likes to help/when I'm making the bed)." There is a "Grocery Store Cat" that "... sits by himself/on the window shelf/in old Mister Galligan's store" and a "Playground Cat" that entices children to "…leave/their slides and swings/to watch him play/with shoelace strings." Other critters sleep, snuggle, pounce, and play. Crawley utilizes line-ending rhyme schemes in the poems, and the familiar pattern will engage beginning or reluctant readers, while the humor and wit will appeal to the school-age crowd. Petrosino's watercolor illustrations match the mood of the light verse as colorful cats are shown contentedly sleeping, wildly cavorting, or interacting with their young owners. Two of the offerings are presented in a comic-book-style format, creating a new, unexpected experience with poetry. Display this volume with Douglas Florian's Bow Wow Meow Meow (Harcourt, 2003) as examples of verse that pay tribute to beloved pets with merriment and affection.– Shawn Brommer, South Central Library System, Madison, WI
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Gr. 2-4, younger for reading aloud. "Hurry-scurry! / Flutter-flurry! / Running! Racing! / What's he chasing?" With loving exasperation and bewilderment, these playful poems muse about why cats do what they do. The cheerful, mostly rhymed couplets describe scenes that kids who know cats will immediately recognize--their early-morning wake-up purrs, veritable narcolepsy, and fickleness: "You want to come in, / you want to go out. / You claw at the screen, / you're pacing about." Petrosino's lively, cartoon-style, and pen-and-ink and watercolor illustrations match the buoyant, affectionate tone of the poems in scenes that show a wide menagerie of cats lounging and leaping in cheery settings--cozy homes, city streets, and neighborhood stores. Teachers may want to pair these amusing views of cat behavior with Douglas Florian's animal poems, while devoted young cat owners will connect with selections such as "What Is the Work of a Cat," in which the speaker notes that unlike dogs, who work hard pulling sleds and herding, cats have a simpler job: they "make me feel happy. That is the work of a cat!" Gillian Engberg
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