From School Library Journal
Grade 5 Up-Rusty, a young "kittypet" (house cat), yearns for adventure. When he's offered the chance to join the ThunderClan, one of the gangs of feral cats in the area, he doesn't hesitate. Renamed Firepaw, he becomes an apprentice and begins to train as a warrior. After rescuing Yellowfang, ex-medicine cat for the ShadowClan who has fled for her life, Firepaw and the other ThunderClan members find themselves in the middle of a turf war against the rival gang, led by the nefarious Brokenstar. There's a traitor in their midst, though, and Firepaw must learn more than just hunting and fighting to survive. The author has created an intriguing world with an intricate structure and mythology, and an engaging young hero. The supporting cast of players is large and a little confusing, but there are standouts who give dimension to the tale. The difficult life of a feral cat is described in some detail, and a fair amount of violence is included. The ending is left ambiguous-there is definitely more to come. This is not as elegantly written as Brian Jacques's "Redwall" series (Philomel), but it's another option for fans of animal adventure/fantasy stories.Mara Alpert, Los Angeles Public Library
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Gr. 6-9. For generations, four clans of wild cats have shared the forest according to laws laid down by powerful ancestral clans. But now things are changing: ShadowClan has banished WindClan and is threatening RiverClan and ThunderClan by insisting on hunting rights within their territories. What's more, each year the TwoLegs encroach further into the forest, and prey is becoming scarce. A prophecy reveals, "Fire alone can save [the] Clan." Into this dangerous situation wanders a "kittypet," a young, bright orange tomcat whose courage earns him, despite objections by some, a place as an apprentice ThunderClan warrior and the new name of Firepaw. In this first spine-tingling episode in the planned Warriors series, Firepaw learns the ways of the wild life, facing many dangers and treachery both within and without his new clan. Intelligence notwithstanding, the cat characters are true to their feline nature, making this sure to appeal to fans of Clare Bell's long-popular Ratha's Creature
(1983) and its sequels and also to followers of Brian Jacques' ongoing Redwall series. Sally EstesCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved