Encore, Opera Cat!

Encore, Opera Cat!

by Tess Weaver, Andrea Wesson
     
 

Alma is a cat who lives in Italy and loves opera. And she isn't just an aficionado, she is a magnificent singer herself. She longs to share the spotlight with Madame SoSo, the famous diva with whom she lives, but no one except Madame knows her secret. Madame SoSo feels the time has come for Alma to share her gift with the world. Alma is not so sure. Would

Overview

Alma is a cat who lives in Italy and loves opera. And she isn't just an aficionado, she is a magnificent singer herself. She longs to share the spotlight with Madame SoSo, the famous diva with whom she lives, but no one except Madame knows her secret. Madame SoSo feels the time has come for Alma to share her gift with the world. Alma is not so sure. Would anyone want to listen to a small cat sing about love? The surprising and satisfying answer to this question, along with humor-filled, stylish art, make for a delightful story sure to tickle fans of Opera Cat as well as all who love cats, opera, or both.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
Alma the cat lives in Italy with Madame SoSo, an opera singer. Alma, who we have met in Opera Cat, loves to sing. When she shatters a glass one day, Madame SoSo decides to tell Maestro about Alma's talent. But he will not listen. So they decide to surprise him with a duet at a concert in Switzerland. Ridiculously costumed and wigged, Alma fears that she is still a cat, so who will listen to her sing of love? She bravely goes on stage though, for the triumphant, happy ending. A fine black line defines all manner of details on these large pages, along with the personalities of the leading characters. Watercolors add to the creation of the elaborately decorated scenes, beginning with fanciful decoration on the title page and the white sketches on the blue background of the end pages. A detailed floor plan of the Madame's furnished apartment helps set the time and place. With her long pointed ears and elegant white torso, Alma is so charming we can believe in her singing success. The impossible premise must be accepted in lighthearted fun. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 1—In this sequel to Opera Cat (Clarion, 2002), Alma is still singing her heart out, imitating the melodious range of her owner, Madame SoSo, world-famous soprano. The talented feline yearns to sing in the spotlight, and when her vocalizing breaks Madame's water glass, the star realizes her pet's time has come. There are a few obstacles to be faced, but at last, when they reach Switzerland, Alma steps into the lights for a solo and then a duet with her beloved caregiver. The breathtaking quality of the performance and a standing ovation inspire the maestro to capture their story in a new composition. The penultimate scene portrays an appreciative audience of cats and dogs—and their humans. The focus of Wesson's watercolor and ink scenes alternates between the prima donna and panoramic, tilted views of the opera hall or apartment, a choice that adds energy to the low-key narrative. Young and senior cat and opera lovers are the primary audience for this tale in which the dramatic tension is comprised of a distracted maestro, a rule-bound conductor who separates Alma from Madame SoSo on the train to Switzerland, and a last-minute encounter with a stagehand (not shown). Jonah Winter's The Fabulous Feud of Gilbert & Sullivan (Scholastic, 2009) presents a higher-octane foray into opera for the elementary crowd.—Wendy Lukehart, Washington DC Public Library
Kirkus Reviews
Alma is a cat with a talent and a dream: She can sing opera, and she wants to perform on stage just like her human, Madame SoSo. Alma's voice is too big for their Italian apartment, so Madame SoSo tries to tell Maestro about her new find. He, however, is too busy planning their upcoming European tour to listen, and Alma and Madame SoSo hatch a plan to debut Alma incognito in an upcoming Swiss performance. Humorously detailed watercolors and poetic yet giggle-worthy text follow the travails of the traveling twosome as they arrive at the concert in the nick of time. Alma realizes that a costume won't really disguise her feline nature, so she appears as herself and sings to the admiration of Maestro and the concert goers, and changes the face of opera for times to come. Ultimately a story about being yourself and following your dreams, this tuneful tale of musical triumph will strike a chord with cat lovers, music appreciators and burgeoning individuals alike. Brava! (Picture book. 5-8)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780547146478
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date:
10/19/2009
Pages:
32
Product dimensions:
9.90(w) x 11.20(h) x 0.40(d)
Age Range:
4 - 7 Years

Meet the Author

Tess Weaver is the author of Opera Cat and Cat Jumped In! She lives in Iowa City, Iowa. For more information visit www.tessweaver.com.

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