Clarence the Copy Cat

Clarence the Copy Cat

by Patricia Lakin, John Manders
     
 
Clarence has finally found a home in the town library, but will he be ousted when the librarian discovers his uselessness as a mouser?
Clarence may be a cat, but he's a peace-loving cat–definitely not a mouser. This gets him evicted from his parents' home at Sam's Sandwich Shop. Sadly, other storekeepers shoo him away too, as soon as a dreaded m-o-u-s-e

Overview

Clarence has finally found a home in the town library, but will he be ousted when the librarian discovers his uselessness as a mouser?
Clarence may be a cat, but he's a peace-loving cat–definitely not a mouser. This gets him evicted from his parents' home at Sam's Sandwich Shop. Sadly, other storekeepers shoo him away too, as soon as a dreaded m-o-u-s-e appears. Poor Clarence just can't find a place without mice.
Dejected and tired, Clarence is feeling very sorry for himself when a kindly librarian takes him in. Clarence's new home is grand–a public library filled with books. There's even a whirring copy machine! Clarence loves to sit on top of it, earning him the name Copy Cat. For months, life is good. Very good . . . until the winter day when a you-know-what shows up. . . .

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
At the start of Lakin's (Don't Forget) appealing story, Clarence, a pacifist cat, gets evicted from Sam's deli: "Clarence stuck to his principles. He would not hurt mice." When he finally finds a new home at the library and the inevitable mouse arrives, Clarence eats the mousetrap cheese and builds barricades of books to keep the mouse at bay. Nothing works until Clarence leaps to save the mouse from the broom-wielding librarian, lands with a "big fat belly flop right on the copy machine glass," and photocopies of Clarence's terrified face scare the mouse away. Like sketchy caricatures, Manders's (First-Base Hero) action sequences and characters seem ready-made for animation, and when the spindly-legged Clarence sees the photocopy of himself as "a huge black cat with bulging legs, an enormous tummy, and whiskers that stuck out like arrows," the visual joke has wry resonance. While the library pictured in the book (patterned after a branch of the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh) is curiously bland (title-less books of a uniform color fill the shelves), book lovers will find the picture of Clarence and the librarian nestled together in a comfy window seat a satisfying parting view. Ages 4-8. (Oct.) Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
School Library Journal
Gr 1-3-Clarence is supposed to help catch the mice in the deli in which he lives with his parents. However, since he can't "bear to harm another living creature," he is banished from the store. He tries to find a home elsewhere, but is thrown out when the owners discover that he is no mouser. The feline slinks sadly down the street and wonders if he will ever find a home. He finally curls up by the door of the local library, where the librarian takes pity on him and invites him in. Clarence loves it there because he is kept "well read, well fed, and well petted," but especially because there are no mice. He sits on top of the copy machine so often that Mr. Spanner calls him Copy Cat. Then, one winter day a mouse shows up for storytime. Readers will sympathize with poor Clarence and root for him as he battles with the rodent and finds a solution to his problem. Manders's appealing, full-color illustrations are lively and full of fun. Tall and skinny Clarence has a black coat and bulging yellow eyes, and is particularly comical when he stuffs his face with cheese or sits primly on the copier. Children will laugh out loud as they follow his adventures.-Kristin de Lacoste, South Regional Public Library, Pembroke Pines, FL Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
A mouse-loving, pacifist cat? A public library? What do these have in common? They're the main ingredients of the plot in this rollicking story about Clarence, who's banished from a sandwich shop because of his refusal to hurt any living creature-including those of the rodent persuasion. Sad and alone, the feline finally finds refuge in a "strange place [where] [h]undreds of books lined the walls of a big room." Like so many others, Clarence finds solace and a comfortable home in the library (the illustrations depict the Oakland Branch of Pittsburgh's Carnegie Library), especially because there's not a mouse in sight. Soon Clarence comes to be known by his rescuer, the friendly librarian Mr. Spanner (wonderful-an older man, no less, who conducts story times), as Clarence Copy Cat because of the furry one's penchant for sitting atop the photocopier. Life's very good . . . until a guess-what makes an appearance through a hole under the copy machine. As usual, Clarence refuses to take part in any mouse-chasing or -catching scheme. Attempting to think of ploys to get the mouse without having to resort to distasteful violence, Clarence finally-and literally-hits upon a method of permanently banishing the creature, thanks to the copy machine. Young readers and listeners will find this a humorous and satisfying solution to the problem. If only all mouse eradications could be accomplished in so simple and amusing a way. Librarians take note: Young customers-those in branches with or without mice-will find much to smile about here, and Manders's goofy, cartoony illustrations are filled with energy and child appeal. (Picture book. 4-8)
From the Publisher
"Children will laugh out loud as they follow [Clarence's] adventures."—School Library Journal"A well-plotted, action packed, comically illustrated story."—Booklist"Librarians take note: Young customers—those in branches with or without mice—will find much to smile about here."—Kirkus Review

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780385908542
Publisher:
Random House Children's Books
Publication date:
10/08/2002
Edition description:
Library Edition
Pages:
32
Product dimensions:
8.66(w) x 11.32(h) x 0.38(d)
Lexile:
380L (what's this?)
Age Range:
5 - 8 Years

Meet the Author

Patricia Lakin has written numerous books for children. She lives in New York City.John Manders has illustrated many picture books. He lives in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

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