Cats Got Talent
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Cats Got Talent

by Ron Barrett
     
 

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Three crooning kitties launch their singing careers in this adorably entertaining back-alley romp from bestselling illustrator of Superhero Joe and Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs.

Three abandoned cats—Dora, Geneva, and Hal—find themselves in the big city. Dora thinks mostly about her wardrobe. Geneva was a pampered pet but now she is

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Overview

Three crooning kitties launch their singing careers in this adorably entertaining back-alley romp from bestselling illustrator of Superhero Joe and Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs.

Three abandoned cats—Dora, Geneva, and Hal—find themselves in the big city. Dora thinks mostly about her wardrobe. Geneva was a pampered pet but now she is on her own, looking for love. Hal is nothing but trouble. He never saw anything he didn’t wan to get his claws into. These three meet and decide to achieve their dreams by finding fortune as a rock band. Can they possibly succeed? The answer depends on whom you ask.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
09/01/2014
Once upon a time, Hal, Dora, and Geneva led cushy lives as pet cats. Then things turned sour with their respective owners (in Hal’s case, his “despicable” curtain-tearing behavior was the source of the sourness), and they ended up as alley cats. Now Hal has an idea: they like to sing, the papers tell him that “singers earned big money,” so what if.... Readers may think Barrett, with his poker-faced storytelling, is headed toward a feline version of American Idol, or at least a tearful reconciliation with the cats’ former owners. But this wonderfully wacky book is full of surprises. What is essentially a Darwinian tug-of-war between cats and humans may not sound like a big laugh getter, but Barrett (Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs) pulls it off. His indomitable—okay, clueless—furry heroes, and hardboiled illustrations, whose retro style is a cross between those of Merrie Melodies and 1960s underground comics, reassure readers that, though the cats’ caterwauling has the neighborhood up in arms, nothing bad is going to happen to them. Ages 4–8. (Oct.)
School Library Journal
09/01/2014
K-Gr 2—Barrett is back with another fun story kids will adore. Hal, Dora, and Geneva are three felines who lead very different lives. Hal is your typical alley cat on the prowl for his next tasty meal after being thrown out of his previous home. Dora lived in a dress shop and adored the finer things in life but had been cast out after putting off the well-heeled customers. Geneva was once owned by a movie star but finds herself on the street after her owner's career reversal. These three kitties find one another and decide to put their talents to use and "sing" for their supper. Barrett's pencil, watercolor, and ink cartoon art conveys the playfulness of the text. Ideal for a read-aloud, Cats Got Talent will appeal to those younger elementary school age children who have dreams of performing and becoming a superstar. A fun, enjoyable read.—Christopher Lassen, Brooklyn Public Library
Kirkus Reviews
2014-08-06
Three stray cats, formerly pets, try to strike it big in showbiz. Gray-striped Hal is always hungry, calico cat Dora loves pretty things, and Geneva, pale pink and wearing a tiara, longs to live in the lap of luxury. Geneva became a stray through no fault of her own, but both Hal and Dora were abandoned (or, more accurately, evicted) by their previous owners for bad behavior. The vivid depictions of their ignominious exits from their original homes, while played for laughs, show a callousness that feels out of sync with today's sensibilities. Once they've taken up residence in the same alley, the three discover a mutual fondness for "singing," which they decide to exploit after Hal sees a newspaper notice about an American Idol-style winner making it big. Barrett keeps the text brief, using details of his distinctly retro cartoon illustrations to add humor and explicate the plot. On one page, the bluebird pictured in a painting that graces one wall in Hal's old home changes expression in response to his attack; on another, Geneva's former owner reads reviews panning her most recent performance. Despite light touches, the cavalier abandonment of the cats, the satiric spoofing of the cats' ambitions and their naïve satisfaction with their "success" create a disappointingly mean-spirited tone overall. (Picture book. 4-7)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781442494510
Publisher:
Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books
Publication date:
10/07/2014
Pages:
32
Sales rank:
1,520,183
Product dimensions:
8.20(w) x 10.30(h) x 0.40(d)
Lexile:
AD530L (what's this?)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

Meet the Author

Ron Barrett is the internationally bestselling illustrator of many books for children, including Cats Got Talent, Superhero Joe, Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs, Pickles to Pittsburgh, Animals Should Definitely Not Wear Clothing, and Old MacDonald Had an Apartment House. His illustrations have been honored by the Society of Illustrators and have been exhibited at The Louvre in Paris. He lives in New York City.

Ron Barrett is the internationally bestselling illustrator of many books for children, including Cats Got Talent, Superhero Joe, Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs, Pickles to Pittsburgh, Animals Should Definitely Not Wear Clothing, and Old MacDonald Had an Apartment House. His illustrations have been honored by the Society of Illustrators and have been exhibited at The Louvre in Paris. He lives in New York City.

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