cats, humor

Simon’s Cat Off to the Vet . . . and Other Cat-astrophes

Simon's Cat Off to the Vet
Author & Illustrator: Simon Tofield
Publisher: Akashic Books
Genre: Cats / Humor
ISBN: 978-1-61775-402-9
Pages: 240
Price: $27.95

Author’s website
Buy it at Amazon

Cats do the craziest things, and it’s amazing how clever they can be when faced with a visit to the vet. Hiding, attempting to resist being put into the cat carrier, and generally creating havoc at the vet’s office, they make sure no one will ever want to repeat the performance. Simon’s Cat has vet catastrophes down to a science, as he shows us exactly what level of destruction he’s capable of. In addition to his visit to the vet, Simon’s Cat also terrorizes the neighbor next door and the kitten who lives in the house with him.

Simon’s Cat books are comics without any words, and the pictures tell a hilarious story. Any cat lover who is unfamiliar with Simon’s Cat will want to find a copy of Simon’s Cat Off to the Vet . . . and Other Cat-astrophes as soon as possible — and will then need to complete his collection. This book is laugh-out-loud funny and I highly recommend it.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

cats, humor

Copycat and a Litter of Other Cats

Copycat
Author & Illustrator: David Yow
Publisher: Akashic Books
Genre: Humor / Cats
ISBN: 978-1-61775-270-4
Pages: 160
Price: $23.95

Author’s website
Buy it at Amazon

The letters “C-A-T” form parts of dozens of words in the English language. Using this as his premise, David Yow has combined his love of both cats and puns in Copycat and a Litter of Other Cats. This unique book shares a cat-inspired phrase with Yow’s drawings of cats in situations representing the pun.

Grumpy Cat, Felix the Cat, Top Cat and Sylvester the Cat make guest appearances, joining Alley Cat, Tomcat, and Bobcat in this parade of bright-eyed cats. Copycat is a fun and whimsical book that any cat lover will enjoy.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

cats, children

Is That My Cat?

Is That My Cat
Author & Illustrator: Jonathan Allen
Publisher: Boxer Books
Genre: Children / Cats
ISBN: 978-1-907967-74-0
Pages: 32
Price: $16.95

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Someone’s cat looks quite different these days. She’s suddenly so large she barely fits through the cat flap. She can no longer be picked up with one hand. And this fussy eater now gobbles up every last bite of food. Who is this fat cat, who is no longer a slim, sleek pussycat?

This cute black kitty has a surprise, and it’s a very happy one. Is That My Cat? is a darling book that will please all cat lovers.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

cats, children

The Great Cat Caper (S.A.V.E. Squad: Book 2)

The Great Cat Caper
Authors: Lauraine Snelling & Kathleen Damp Wright
Publisher: Barbour Publishing
Genre: Children / Cats
ISBN: 978-1-61626-566-3
Pages: 160
Price: $5.99

Author’s website
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Vee is beginning sixth grade in the Accelerated Learning Center. Always driven to excel, she anticipates a great year ahead of her. But a problem with her math score may send her back to regular sixth grade, much to her dismay.

After asking her dad to set up math tutoring for her retest, she tackles an assigned community service project along with her S.A.V.E. Squad friends. This time they will be arranging the Great Cat Caper at the senior center, in an attempt to find homes for the cats at Paws ‘N’ Claws rescue. The project takes on new significance when the TV show Everything Animal decides to film their efforts. But who is “mouthwash lady,” and is she trying to sabotage everything?

In this sequel to Dog Daze, we meet Vee, the second member of the squad. Vee is troubled over her parents’ divorce and remarriages, and trying to get used to her new family dynamics. Finding treasure in God, she finally realizes she has the “spot” she’s been looking for.  The Great Cat Caper is an enjoyable faith-filled read.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

cats, children

Lazy Hero Cat and the Pirates

Lazy Hero Cat and the Pirates
Author: Stanford Crow
Illustrator: Nancy S. Hemmingson
Publisher: Bliss Group Books
Genre: Children
ISBN: 978-1-940021-06-5
Pages: 26
Price: $7.50

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Bubastis “Bub” the cat is back (Lazy Hero Cat of Egypt) and this time he’s sunning himself on the bank of the Nile, enjoying a cozy catnap. When the river floods, he’s too lazy to notice he’s floating away. Pirates net his cat bed and bring him on board their ship to catch rats.

Bub just continues to snooze, so the pirates get angry and make him walk the plank. But Bub has no intention of doing anything but sleep. Luckily for the pirates, his laziness will pay off in ways they never expected.

Lazy Hero Cat and the Pirates is a delightfully humorous read. Kids will really enjoy this fun series.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

cats, children

Lazy Hero Cat of Egypt

Lazy Hero Cat of Egypt
Author: Stanford Crow
Illustrator: Nancy S. Hemmingson
Publisher: Bliss Group Books
Genre: Children
ISBN: 978-0-9885359-1-6
Pages: 24
Price: $7.50

Buy it at Amazon

Bubastis the cat is very lazy. He sleeps all day on top of the sarcophagus of Queen Nefertari, too lazy to look, listen or smell anything. So he doesn’t move at all when two tomb robbers break in to steal from the sarcophagus.

But being lazy is just the right way to handle these thieves. In a comedy of errors, Bubastis manages to knock them both out, just by doing nothing. And the next day, he is hailed as a hero when the men are discovered in the tomb.

Lazy Hero Cat of Egypt is a humorous tale that’s pure fun for kids to read. I highly recommend this delightful story.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

cats, tween

Anton and Cecil: Cats at Sea

Anton and Cecil Cats at Sea
Author: Lisa Martin & Valerie Martin
Illustrator: Kelly Murphy
Publisher: Algonquin Young Readers
Genre: Middle-grade / Cats
ISBN: 978-161620-246-0
Pages: 256
Price: $16.99

Valerie Martin’s website
Buy it at Amazon

Anton and Cecil are two cat brothers living near the docks in Nova Scotia. Cecil loves to visit the sailors on the ships, while Anton prefers remaining on shore. Cats are often captured and forced aboard the ships to rid them of rats, and Anton suddenly finds himself out at sea. Cecil, intent on rescuing his brother, boards the next ship out. But the sea is a wide-open place, and he has no idea how to find Anton.

Dolphins, whales, and a mouse, as well as another seafaring cat, all become companions of these two cats at sea. Is there also a kind and powerful force looking out for them all, and will they finally be reunited? Storms, pirates, rats, and menacing birds all threaten their safety, but legend has it that cats at sea are protected by a mysterious eye.

Unfortunately, this legend is presented in obscure quotations and eye sightings, and not fully explained. The disappearance of a ship’s entire crew is also not explained, and in researching, I discovered this had actually happened on the Mary Celeste, a real ship found abandoned near Gibraltar in 1872. A small reference to this might have made the incident feel more plausible.

Cats at Sea is full of adventure, as Anton and Cecil learn to live on the sea. Overall, it’s a fun read with a happy ending. Kids will enjoy the way these three cats and an unusual mouse relate to each other, and the strong friendships that develop.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

cats, children

Do You Know a Cat Like That?

Do You Know a Cat Like That
Author: Art Garmissie
Illustrator: Carol Newsom
Publisher: FastPencil
Genre: Children / Cats
Pages: 40
Price: $16.95

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One day, a man rescues a kitten he names Moochee. In Do You Know a Cat Like That?, we see some of Moochee’s antics from her own perspective, after she moves into the household. Rolling around inside cardboard mail tubes, jumping from kitchen cabinets, and taking a bath, Moochee lets us know how she feels about her actions.

The illustrations of this adorable feline will make the reader smile, and her thoughts are comical and sweet. Moochee definitely has her own personality, as do most cats! This cute book would be a great addition to any cat lover’s library.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

animals, cats, nature

Fierce Beauty: Preserving the World of Wild Cats

Fierce Beauty
Author: Bhagavan “Doc” Antle
Publisher: Earth Aware Editions
Genre: Nature / Cats
ISBN: 978-1-60109-061-4
Pages: 246
Price: $50.00

Author’s website
T.I.G.E.R.S. website
Buy it at Amazon

The world’s big cat populations are dwindling at an alarming rate. Studies have determined that tigers may even be headed for extinction in the very near future. In an attempt to capture their images before they disappear forever, this beautiful book shows us these stunning creatures in all their majestic glory.

For the most part, Fierce Beauty is a photo album of some of the bigs cats currently residing at the TIGERS Institute. These impressive cats are protected from poachers, while also being bred for future posterity. Although many believe that big cats deserve to be wild, the author argues that there are no more wild places for these animals to roam safely, and their future may only be protected in captivity.

If you love big cats, you’ll enjoy these amazingly detailed, up-close photos taken against plain white or black backdrops. Fierce Beauty would make a wonderful gift for the cat lover in your life.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

cats, children, education

Fairminded Fran and the Three Small Black Community Cats


Author: Linda Elder
Illustrator: Kathy Abney
Publisher: Foundation For Critical Thinking
Genre: Children / Cats
ISBN: 978-0-94458-347-0
Pages: 48
Price: $9.95

Buy it here

Fran discovers three small black cats outside her school, foraging at the dumpster. She tries to befriend them, but they’re too scared and run away. Concerned for their well-being, she brings this matter to her teacher. He advises her that they are feral cats, and will never be able to be pets. But with the help of the principal, she and others arrange for their care and neutering.

In this unique book, children are alerted to the plight of homeless feral cats in their neighborhood. They learn about the concept of trap-neuter-return, so the cats won’t continue to reproduce. (See Alley Cat Allies website for more information on this program.) Compassion and caring are encouraged to be sure these small strays will live healthy lives, while their population diminishes.

Along with Fairminded Fran, kids meet Selfish Sam, and Naive Nancy, who have differing opinions on these cats. Critical thinking is used to determine the right way to handle this situation. Fairminded Fran and the Three Small Black Community Cats would be a great classroom resource, not only to let kids know about feral cats, but also to encourage the process of critical thinking. I highly recommend it.

Reviewer: Alice Berger