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Big cat makes a surprise appearance, prompting a brother and sister to come out and play.
Early one morning, just as the birds are preparing to sing, Ollie and Ali are awakened by a beastly snore in their backyard. Ollie looks out the window and sees what looks like a giant carrot or pumpkin but, after rubbing his eyes, realizes that it's a tiger. Ali names the tiger Louis and says he looks like he came from the sea, a suspicion that's confirmed when the duo opens the window and smells seaweed and saltwater. Though their parents are a bit reticent (and hide behind a tree), the children get into their bathing suits, prepare a big bucketful of food for Louis and hurry outside. A roar from Louis sends the whole family running back to the house. Louis calmly follows them in and settles on a big purple rug right in front of the fireplace. Mother runs a bath for the beast, which seems to enjoy it. But the problem remains; the family puts its heads together and comes up with a creative solution for luring Louis back into the sea. Kozlowski's story is appealing, but readers will need to surrender to the goofy surrealism to enjoy it. Walker contrasts the tiger, majestic and realistic, with the more cartoonish family to nice effect.
An odd but not at all unlikable fable. (Picture book. 3-6)