- Age Range: 8 - 12 years
- Grade Level: 4 - 7
- Lexile Measure: NP (What's this?)
- Series: AWARDS: Charlie May Simon Children's Book Award 2010-2011
- Hardcover: 160 pages
- Publisher: HarperCollins; First Edition edition (September 23, 2008)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0061430927
- ISBN-13: 978-0061430923
- Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.8 x 7.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (71 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #411,146 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Hate That Cat: A Novel Hardcover – September 23, 2008
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From School Library Journal
Grade 4–8—In this worthy sequel to Love That Dog (HarperCollins, 2001), Jack is once again in Miss Stretchberry's class, developing his poetry composition skills and learning from the masters. His Uncle Bill disparages the free-verse form and mundane subjects, stressing the importance of metaphor, alliteration, onomatopoeia, and LARGE moments. But Jack works his way into these concepts by means of Miss S's introduction to the work of Edgar Allan Poe, T. S. Eliot, William Carlos Williams, Valerie Worth, and Walter Dean and Chris Myers, and her constant encouragement of his own attempts. Jack, still healing from the loss of his dog, resists getting a new pet and despises an aloof neighborhood black cat with which he has an unpleasant run-in. He also grapples with putting into words his feelings about his mother, who is deaf, a fact that is slowly and deftly revealed in his poems. When the Christmas-present kitten he has learned to love disappears, Jack grieves anew, until the despised black cat saves the day. Once again, all of the poems are addressed to Miss Stretchberry, and Jack's growing excitement as he discovers the delights of sound ("Tintinnabulation!") and expression is palpable. He also learns the poetry of silence as he and his mother communicate through sign language and tender gestures. The relevant poems are included at the end of the book, along with a hefty bibliography of "Books on the Class Poetry Shelf." Readers will be touched and inspired once more.—Marie Orlando, Suffolk Cooperative Library System, Bellport, NY
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In a worthy companion piece to Love That Dog (2001), Creech employs observant sensitivity and spare verse to carve an indelible portrait of a boy who discovers the power of self-expression. Once again, Jack works on a poetry journal for Miss Stretchberry, now his fifth-grade teacher. He responds to her instruction with skepticism, all the while absorbing the depth of feeling in the poems she shares, sometimes in spite of himself. Creech is a master of negative space; though we see only Jack’s side of their dialogue, we learn a great deal about the other figures in Jack’s life. In Love That Dog, Jack’s reluctant relationship with poetry mirrored his struggle to let go of a good friend. In this title, we see Jack’s reluctance waning, and with it, the resolute protection of his feelings. Try as he might to hold them off, the lines of Miss Stretchberry’s poems open a space in his heart just big enough to allow affection for a small black kitten, dotted with white, to find its way in. Grades 3-6. --Thom Barthelmess
Top Customer Reviews
"Hate That Cat" is one of the most touching, endearing, delightful, clever, entertaining, instructive books I've ever read. Written in poetic form based on the poems his teacher presents, the book outlines the thinking and writing processes of Jack, one young boy, not any boy, but a very bright, creative boy, one you would want as your student (if a teacher) or your child (if a parent). I was totally captivated by the character, the style of the book, the themes conveyed--not just one, but several, and left tear stains on the last 20 pages or so. This in a 148-page book.
Here's one example of what I mean. Miss Stretchberry introduced the poem by William Carlos Williams (one of my favorites, BTW) entitled "The Red Wheelbarrow."
so much depends
a red wheel
glazed with rain
beside the white
So here's what he writes to Miss Stretchberry:
"The wheelbarrow poem again?
Did you forget we read it last year?
Okay, here's one:
so much depends upon
a creeping cat
crouched in the tree
beside the yellow bus stop."
Then he tells Miss Stretchberry that she will probably ask why (this is his journal) so much depends on that cat.Read more ›
When last we saw Jack he had learned to love the poet Walter Dean Myers and to accept that his dead dog was gone. Now it's an entirely new school year and Surprise! Miss Stretchberry is unexpectedly his teacher again. Of course, she's not too pleased with the series of anti-cat poems he's been writing lately.Read more ›
like my grandpa loves pie
I said I love that book
like my grandpa loves pie
Love to eat it in one sitting
Love to eat it
lean back, sigh.
This book is about a child finding his true voice, and learning to trust love after loss. It is written with such subtlety and delicacy it merits reading and rereading, in enjoyment of its language and meaning. Hope you enjoy it, too!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This story is amazing
You don't need to love dogs
Or hate cats
You just need to sing a song
That you're willing to fall in your lap.
I love this book, and I am not even a big reader. I don't prefer to read, and when I do they are short books. But this book got me wanting to read more. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Kelly J.
This is a great book for students for whom reading does not come easily. A third grade group of children have enjoyed this story. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Amazon Customer
This book is really touching to the heart. I would recommend it to people of all ages. Read it aloud.Published 6 months ago by BananaSweets
Best book ever
How it starts as a poem
Coolest book ever!!!!
It's a great book so good
We thought that Hate That Cat was a good follow up to Love That Dog.
Mrs. Winbauer's 4th Grade Class
Hate That Cat is an excellent, first-class book. There is a boy named Jack and he is so curious. He’s also just so uplifting in poets like Walter Dean Myers and Edgar Allan Poe. Read morePublished 8 months ago by Amazon Customer
A story of cat adventure and poetry all mixed together to make a great tale of a boy named Jack!Published 9 months ago by Kindle Customer