Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Cat Wishes by Calista Brill, illustrated by Kenard Pak

At some point, late in the summer of 2018, I suddenly became seized by the desire to have a cat-themed outreach storytime. Probably in December (I'm not discussing holidays, the use or lack thereof, so don't bring it up). Naturally, I then put on hold all the new cat picture books I could find.

In this sweet story, a hungry little striped cat, with a cute overhanging tooth, wishes they had something to eat. When he catches a wiggly gray snake, he lets him go for the promise of three wishes, although he doesn't believe in wishes. But first he finds a fish, then a home, and finally, a friend. A special friend who also got three wishes from a wiggly gray snake in the woods...

Kenard Pak's misty watercolors, with splashes of color, are an excellent match for Brill's gentle, wistful prose. Cat wanders through a misty world and readers can practically feel the chilly, dripping rain, the soft glow of the sun, and the spooky dark of a lonely house.

Cat is essentially a cat, one who doesn't believe in magic and accepts things as they come, but he's also lonely for a lap to curl up on and pleased to find a home at the end of the story.

Verdict: A sweet and mildly funny story, a good addition to a cat storytime with lovely pictures and gentle, lyrical prose. Recommended.

ISBN: 9780544610552; Published July 2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt; Borrowed from another library in my consortium

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