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!
Santa’s Snow Cat
Sue Stainton, author
Illustrated by Anne Mortimer
Katharine Tegen Books, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers, 2001
Snow Cat is Santa’s favorite cat and she travels with him everywhere – especially on Christmas Eve. One Christmas Eve she becomes enchanted by the lights in the city below and accidentally falls from the sleigh. She falls into the streets of New York City and in searching for her own Santa she comes across many “nearly” Santas and being frozen and tired, she gives up hope.
Main characters –
- Snow Cat, pure white cat with beautiful jade green eyes
- Santa, everyone knows who he is
- Big Lemon Moon, full moon shining brightly in the night sky
- North Wind, blows his snow and ice everywhere
A beautifully illustrated sweet story of reassurance that if you get lost the one who loves you the most will find you again. It is a sweet bedtime story for Christmas Eve night, to remind the reader that Christmas is more than presents and busyness. It is also about love. Santa searches for her and lands on the “tallest of tall buildings” which, with an illustration of Santa on the World Trade Towers, provides a poignant reminder of what was lost and a promise of the future.
Rating: 4 Paws for the purity of heart and the love of Snow Cat and Santa.
Other books by Sue Stainton:
Other illustrations by Anne Mortimer (there we so many to choose from, I chose only cats in winter!)
Other books illustrated by Anne Mortimer
Real live Santa’s Snow Cats…
(image in public domain)
from Maine Coon Nation
from Pix for Ragdoll Cats
And finally, our own Santa’s Snow Cat, Laura (although she has yellow eyes, but don’t tell Santa!)