Illustrated by Itoko Maeno
Marsh Media, 1992, 2008
From the dust jacket: “The lion is the emblem of Venice, but the common cat rules its narrow streets and alleyways. A prince among these feline rulers is Piccolo, and what a fine life he leads! Especially after dark—when the streets are full of possibilities!
“Then one night, Piccolo makes a discovery that threatens his carefree life and his independence and starts him on a new and special kind of adventure.
“In these pages, you will also meet Caesar—Piccolo’s older and somewhat cynical friend, and Sophia—the shoe shop cat, to whom Piccolo turns for advice when his life takes it turn. And you will meet two irresistible kittens—one spotted and one striped—who need a home and who help Piccolo discover his own tender heart.”
Piccolo is quite the roaming tomcat – he and his pal Caesar patrol their streets looking for mischief and sardines! All that changes when he meets two homeless kittens and after he tries to pawn the kittens off on a female friend, Sophia (she says absolutely not!), they win him over and he becomes a papa.
This is an adorable book that offers a different kind of family – one that has a boy cat looking after kittens. The author wrote it to teach boys that it’s okay to be nurturing but thankfully, the teaching part comes as an afterword at the end of the book and not as a part of the story. The illustrations of Venice are wonderful – it makes me want to go there!
Rating: 4 out of 5 paws because Piccolo rescued some kittens and is proud to be a papa!
Stack the Cats
Abrams Appleseed, Abrams Books, 2017
From the book jacket, “One cat sleeps. Two cats play. Three cats stack!”
“Cats of all shapes and sizes scamper, yawn, and stretch across the pages of this playful counting book. And every now and then, some of them pile into the purrfect cat stack!”
Totally awesome book! For the youngest of readers, the bright colors and simple sentences help kittens learn to count, and, add/subtract basic numbers as well! The cats are adorable – you do have to get past the idea that some of the cats aren’t drawn with legs (just imagine the limbs folded underneath their bodies – loaf style). The bright colors aren’t typical red, blue, yellow, etc.; instead there’s coral, mustard yellow, and seafoam green cats. Here at the Library, we love this stylistic and mod book for kittens!
Rating: 4 out of 5 paws for totally cool stacking cats.
Ursula K. Le Guin
Illustrated by S. D. Schindler
Orchard Books, an imprint of Scholastic Inc., 2009
From the dust jacket: “Climb into a cat’s dreamland! It’s raining mice, all the dogs have run away and a big bowl of kibbles and cream is waiting.”
It’s as if the author peeked inside my head to see what I dream of!!! Beautifully illustrated with gorgeous detailed imaginings of what all cats secretly hope for – lots of mice, no drooling dogs, a never-ending bowl of yummy goodness and even a cat nip tree to climb!! The rhymed text is large with simple words that dance across the page enchanting toddlers and beginning readers alike. The young kittens in your household will ask you to read this book to them again and again!
Rating 4 out of 5 paws for big bowls of cream, raining mice and scared dogs!! Also for moms who hold you when you’re scared.
Little Bee Books, a division of Bonnier Publishing, 2016
From the back of the book, “Peek-a-boo baby, peek-a-boo you! Kitty’s playing peek-a-boo, why don’t you play, too? Join in the fun with curious Kitty and see who’s hiding behind the cut-out holes.”
For the youngest of kittens, this book is absolutely adorable. What a great shower or first birthday gift to a queen and her kittens! The story is told with simple, rhyming words and sweet painted drawings about a Kitty that plays peek-a-boo with a toddler.
The beautiful kitty on the cover is what attracted me to this picture book – and I wasn’t disappointed. You know how I love a beautiful cat book!! This is a lovely first book to introduce kittens to storytelling and reading. And even if at first they don’t understand the words, they will enjoy looking at the kitty and toddler on each page.
Rating 4 out of 5 paws because it’s a heart-warmer story with a lovely cat on almost every page.
Nat the Cat
Can Sleep Like That
Illustrations by Tara Anderson
From the dust jacket: “Nat has a talent for sleeping all day long. Name any place in the house and Nat can sleep in, on, under, or sprawled across it. In fact, Nat is so devoted to slumber that the kitten’s energetic escapades don’t bother him one bit, until …
“When the night time quiet falls,
When strange shadows fill the halls,
“Now Nat is all fired up and ready to go! Will the kitten be able to keep up, or is it time for her to find the perfect place to settle down for a wee nap?
“Victoria Allenby’s rhythmic verse perfectly accompanies Tara Anderson’s irresistible art. Cat lovers young and old will delight in this not-quite-ready-for-bedtime treat.”
Toby particularly loved this book when I read it to him – he likes anything that stars a ginger man-cat. But I think it’s because the way and where Nat sleeps. Just like Toby, Nat can sleep on his back, in drawers, half-on and half-off a shelf, in sunpuddles and always in mom’s way when she’s busy around the house. Me? I find the most comfortable spot around – mom’s bed – at least 99.9% of the time! At night, also just like Nat, Toby seems to get a second wind and tears around the house like a madcat, tearing up the place!
This is a fun book for kittens; the book jacket says it’s a good bedtime book, but I don’t think so – it’s liable to excite your kittens rather than settle them down. Maybe you can read it to them after naptime to get them going again. The rhymes are easy, the printing is large and a mix of black and white/yellow on dark and white background, and the illustrations are so cute!! We really enjoyed it!
Rating 4 out of 5 paws for a sleeping ginger cat like Toby!!!