Posts Tagged ‘Cats’

Pearl in a Whirl. How one fluffy cat braved the floods by Catherine Robertson, Illus. Fifi Colston. Pub. Puffin, 2023.

May 29, 2023 Comments off

Cyclone Gabrielle was one of the worst storms to hit New Zealand and every living creature in the Hawke’s Bay region of New Zealand was affected and is still affected.

This is the story of how Pearl the fluffy cat survived the storm and it mirrors the feelings and fate of so many people in the Hawke’s Bay region. The proceeds from this book are being donated to The Hawke’s Bay Foundation which makes it doubly important that people read and purchase this fine picture book.

Pearl loves her home and her life just as humans do. She swats, slurps, sleeps and hides but it is all about to change. Outside the storm hits and rages for twelve hours. The water rises and the humans must escape but Pearl is left behind. “Will someone please save me!” she thinks.

What will happen to Pearl and will she find her family again? Read it and find out.

Superb illustrations by Fifi Colston. The double page spread as the storm hits is striking and her characterisation of the results of the storm and of Pearl the cat and other animals is mind blowing.

In the back is the story of the real Pearl with pictures of the real family to whom she belonged.

One of the best New Zealand picture books of the year. Don’t miss it you will kick yourself if you do.

Curly-Cat by Jennifer Somervell. Illus. Zerika Van Jaarsveld. Pub. Landing Lights Press, 2021

September 12, 2021 Comments off

This is a first class picture book about more than a cat with a long straggly tail. It is about bullying, it is about cats and how they communicate with their tails and it is about friends and their importance for self esteem.

Curly-Cat has an unruly tail. He thinks it is different and weird. He tries everything to make it look better including a trip to the Laundrocat to make it curly, remove hairballs and look good. It doesn’t, and a very impressive Meany cat taunts him about it.

Curly -Cat goes to Barber Cat to shorten his tail but that is not the answer and Curly -Cat leaves with tears in his eyes. Then Barber Cat has a brilliant idea that will change Curly-Cats life for ever at the Best Tail in Pawsville Competition. It is great as tails are judged to the music of the Hot Tin Roof band.

The illustrations are superb and in the back information is given about the breed of cat used to make all the characters. There is also an information page on what bullying is and a picture of the cat with the longest tail.

The happy ending is illustrated as the cats play Tails and Ladders while eating Mouse Mallows, choc Fish and wing chips.

One of the picture books of the year. This book will keep youngsters occupied for hours.

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Mrs Chippy the Cat by Susan Brocker, Illus. Raymond McGrath. Pub. Scholastic, 2021.

June 29, 2021 Comments off

This true story is part of the legendary Ernst Shackleton and his ship the Endurance which was crushed by sea ice and led to a great journey of survival in 1914.

Mrs Chippy got on board the Endurance because he was a good ratter. He was in fact a male cat but was better than a wife to the carpenter on board Chippy McNeish who gave him his name. The cat earned his passage by being company to the men on board Endurance. He even found a stowaway.

When the ship was caught in pack ice and eventually was crushed and sank, Mrs Chippy was with the men. But did he survive the journey? Read it and find out.

Excellent illustrations by Raymond McGrath who captures the Antarctic environment and the stormy southern seas. Fishing Mrs Chippy out of the stormy cold seas was a highlight for me and creeping out on the bowsprit.

An outline of the details of the journey are in the back plus some real photographs. Don’t miss this it is very good.

Elastic Island Adventures Bk5. Kingdom of Blong. Pub. Duckling, 2021. Lighthouse PR.

June 20, 2021 Comments off

An easy to read adventure series for primary and intermediate aged children. This is the latest and it is about the kingdom of blong whose king has gone missing.

Yes it is a cat and if you have a cat you will know that cats have staff, they are owned by no-one.

The four children from the first four books Kiri, Jed and twins Emma and Ethan are all in this adventure but it is Emma’s cat Blong that takes the headlines. Blong is the missing king of Blong an island on which inhabit cats and bilbies. If you don’t know what a bilby is look it up, but they are delightful little animal like a small kangaroo and cats love to hunt them.

The four children take the elastic Island route to Blong and Emma’s cat is lauded as the missing king. His sister Bella has held the fort while he has been gone but Blong himself is not keen in assuming the role of king.

When they arrive on the island Emma’s cat Blong and his sister Bella and an imposter usurps the throne and tears up the treaty that kept peace between cats and bilbies. Cats are now allowed to hunt bilbies and a slaughter is threatened.

What will the children do? Is there a way out? Check it and see and look at the others in the series too.

This series is a lot of fun, easy to read and brings up problems that we humans have in our own society. Reluctant readers will have no problem with these stories..

My Cat Can See Ghosts by Emily Joe. Pub, Beatnik, 2021.

April 11, 2021 Comments off

I read this delightful and insightful picture book about cats and ghosts to my granddaughters who both have a cat. They loved it and said immediately it was just like their cats.

Cat behaviour is always intriguing, they are an aristocratic animal who have staff and know how to get what they want. My granddaughters are the same.

The text is poetic “Sometimes my cat appears to stare, At something more than just thin air.” You will have to read it yourself to see what happens next.

The illustrations by the author are superb. The ghosts in the cat’s eyes, the relaxed way a cats stretches out and the sudden burst of energy that a cat shows with hairs puffed up tall. All there in dark pastel colours with yellow shades prominent.

Lovely ending. A must buy for any school library and a home with cats.

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Kylo Kitty moves to the City by Chantal Venter. illus. Katerina Kalinichenko.

September 14, 2020 Comments off

Kylo Kitty moves to the City by Chantal Venter. illus. Katerina Kalinichenko. Pub. KyloKitty Books, 2020.

Kylo kitty has moved to the city and is looking for friends. He gets up early and goes looking.

He meets Anthony Ant and kiwi Karl but they are not unfriendly but don’t need a friend. A white tail appears and disappears then white paws are seen. What or who can it be?

He meets the owner of these things and his name is Spooky. read it and find out who it is.

Well Illustrated with Kylo well characterised with dark coat and big green eyes. The text is rhyming and great for reading aloud to pre schoolers and juniors.

It comes with a sheet of stickers too.

Dozer the Fire Cat by Robyn Prokop illus. Jenny Cooper.

February 8, 2020 Comments off

dozerDozer the Fire Cat by Robyn Prokop illus. Jenny Cooper. Pub. Scholastic 2020.

A fire has started. take only your most treasured possessions say the police and evacuate quickly.

Animals cannot understand that and Dozer the cat keeps doing the things he has always done. The humans call and call but Dozer is sleeping.

Then the fire arrives is put out by brave firemen but Dozer is alone surrounded by black. The ash sticks to his paws, he is frightened and scared.

This must have happened to thousands of animals during the Australian bush tires but this true story is based in New Zealand during the Nelson fires of February 2019.

Robyn Prokop’s written text brings out the drama of the fire, while Jenny Cooper as brilliant as ever, captures the fire and the fear of the pussy cat.

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Cats and Robbers by Russell Ayt

April 3, 2019 Comments off

cats robbersCats and Robbers by Russell Ayt. Pub. Bloomsbury, 2019.

This is the Home Alone of picture books. Two cats verses three robbers and I bet you can guess who is going to win.

The cats live in a long tall house with three floors and a basement. Three infamous robbers are up a tree casing the joint. On the top floor they see a safe that must be full of lots of loot but they don’t see the cats.

The two cats have spying cameras and mics in the basement and prepare booby traps for the robbers. The robbers are not the sharpest tools in the shed and as they tiptoe, sneak and creep through the house they are ambushed by the cats and sent where all robbers should be sent. Read it and see what happens.

The illustrations are truly unique. Each page has a different pastel colour with illustrations that enhance the text yet tell another side of the story. The robbers are suitably villainous and stupid and the cats are both innocent and cunning.

One of the best of the year. Don’t miss it.

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OH No! Look what the Cat dragged in by Joy H. Davidson, illus. Jenny Cooper.

December 13, 2018 Comments off

cat dragged inOH No! Look what the Cat dragged in by Joy H. Davidson, illus. Jenny Cooper. Pub. DHD Publishing, Imprint Lighthouse Press, 2018.

If you are the owner of a cat who has presented you with a dead bird or mouse on the doorstep and had a smug pleased look on it’s face, then this is the book for you.

Joy Davidson has told a story in rhyming text with a repeated chorus that is over the top and very funny. Grandma’s big black cat on Monday left a big smelly rat on the rug along with a hedgehog and a big brown shiny cockroach. Oh No!

On the other days of the week the nightly catch gets bigger and more bizarre. It is a days of the week book too. But on Sunday things have changed. Read the book and see why.

Splendid illustrations by Jenny Cooper. The cat is a pearler.

For juniors and pre schoolers. A great read-a-loud.

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Big Box Little Box by Caryl Hart and Edward Underwood.

August 22, 2017 Comments off

big boxBig Box Little Box by Caryl Hart and Edward Underwood. Pub. Bloomsbury, 2017.

It is a pleasure to read a picture book with rhyming text where the rhyme is not forced or uses a made up word. The text flows from one box to another making it perfect for reading aloud to juniors.

Not only that it emphasises shapes, colours and uses that the box has besides the ones that the cat and later the mouse put them to.

” Brown box, Green Box, Yellow box ,black box, blue box, red box. Hey That’s not a bed box.”

The cat is inside most of the boxes with  a knowing look, until the mouse. Then a chase and a surprise ending. Read it and find out what it is.

Superbly paced, well written and set out, with the illustrations just perfect.

Just lovely

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