Gentle, occasionally funny furry adventures for those just ready for chapter books.

SUPERCAT VS. THE FRY THIEF

Have no fear, Supercat is here!

James Jones wanted an exciting pet, like a polar bear or a panther. What he got was a fat, orange tabby cat from the rescue shelter. No matter what James does, he can’t get Tiger to play along with his make-believe games. Then one day, while James is at school, Tiger devours a French fry and a moldy sock from under James’ bed—and suddenly, Tiger has superpowers. He can talk; he can even speak French. He can leap and fight and create his own costume. When James gets home and gets over the shock, the two set out to fight crime like Tigerman, James’ favorite comic-book hero. When the two stop to refuel with a snack of French fries, they discover a worldwide tater shortage has made the cost skyrocket. Could Count Backwards, Tigerman’s nemesis, be behind the shortage? More importantly can the duo keep Tiger’s abilities a secret from James’ nosy, pushy little sister, Mimi? Prolific British children’s author Willis kicks off a new series with a slow-out-of-the-gate origin story. Field’s abundant cartoon drawings add to the length and the appeal, but jokey superhero cats have been done better in Dan Santat’s Sidekicks (2011) and Ashley Spires’ Binky the Space Cat books.

Gentle, occasionally funny furry adventures for those just ready for chapter books. (Fantasy. 6-9)

Pub Date: March 24, 2015

ISBN: 978-000-758596-0

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Harper360

Review Posted Online: Dec. 6, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15, 2014

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

A hilarious but enlightening guide to the online world—the good, the bad, and the ugly.

BAD KITTY GETS A PHONE (GRAPHIC NOVEL)

A craving for the latest tech leads to cat-astrophe in this new addition to the Bad Kitty series.

With her heart set on owning a cellphone, anthropomorphic house cat Kitty plows through three solid months of chores without complaining before her owners reluctantly grant her fervent wish. Then things go rapidly downhill. She becomes obsessed with violent mobile games, gets catfished (no pun intended), divulges too much personal information online, becomes consumed with rage at cyberbullies, and grows listless from excessive screen time. Only after the intervention of a Sphynx cat named Strange Kitty and a monthlong technology fast enforced by her owners does Kitty come to understand that while smartphones are fun, they can also be a serious distraction from real life and true friends. Using a digestible graphic-novel format, the book tackles internet safety and digital media literacy with purr-fect aplomb. The “Uncle Murray’s Fun Facts” section serves as a deep dive into the differences between facts and opinions, and many of Kitty’s quirky feline behaviors ring true. It’s unfortunate that the word lame—a disability-related term with negative connotations—is used by the internet trolls who deride the video Kitty makes and posts on “ViewTube.” Occasional misstep aside, Kitty’s tribulations provide ample fodder for this instructive and amusing tale.

A hilarious but enlightening guide to the online world—the good, the bad, and the ugly. (Graphic novel. 6-9)

Pub Date: Dec. 28, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-250-74996-3

Page Count: 144

Publisher: Roaring Brook Press

Review Posted Online: Nov. 16, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2021

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

An effective early chapter book conveyed in a slightly overdone gag.

DEAR BEAST

Epistolary dispatches from the eternal canine/feline feud.

Simon the cat is angry. He had done a good job taking care of his boy, Andy, but now that Andy’s parents are divorced, a dog named Baxter has moved into Andy’s dad’s house. Simon believes that there isn’t enough room in Andy’s life for two furry friends, so he uses the power of the pen to get Baxter to move out. Inventively for the early-chapter-book format, the story is told in letters written back and forth; Simon’s are impeccably spelled on personalized stationery while Baxter’s spelling slowly improves through the letters he scrawls on scraps of paper. A few other animals make appearances—a puffy-lipped goldfish who for some reason punctuates her letter with “Blub…blub…” seems to be the only female character (cued through stereotypical use of eyelashes and red lipstick), and a mustachioed snail ferries the mail to and fro. White-appearing Andy is seen playing with both animals as a visual background to the text, as is his friend Noah (a dark-skinned child who perhaps should not be nicknamed “N Man”). Cat lovers will appreciate Simon’s prickliness while dog aficionados will likely enjoy Baxter’s obtuse enthusiasm, and all readers will learn about the time and patience it takes to overcome conflict and jealousy with someone you dislike.

An effective early chapter book conveyed in a slightly overdone gag. (Fiction. 6-8)

Pub Date: May 12, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-8234-4492-2

Page Count: 80

Publisher: Holiday House

Review Posted Online: Jan. 21, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2020

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet
more