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Children love books, animals, and bright colors--this book combines them all in a perfectly sweet, artistic way. Over the course of a single day, a blonde-haired little girl makes a new friend by reaching out, tenderly wooing, and patiently awaiting the love of a cat that showed up on her doorstep that morning. She eventually wins the heart and trust of this shy, fluffy coon cat. From climbing a tree and napping in the sunshine, to exploring the neighborhood and chasing a dragonfly, to watching the full moon and cuddling with the little girl and her own kitten, this timid Maine coon cat is welcomed into a new home after he welcomed them to their new home.
Both the author and illustrator have homes, and further ties, in Maine. Their love of this place is obvious through their words and work. The Maine coon cat, which I had never heard of before reading this book, is thought to be native to Maine, is the State Cat of Maine, and is now making a presence here in children's literature. Available for a reasonable price--$18 or less--this book is a great addition to any home (or other) library. The book is full of delightfully detailed watercolors that are painted with a bright, eye-catching color palette. The beautifully captured nature scenes (birch trees, bright purple flowers, tree blossoms) and the lovely depictions of inside a home (rugs, toys, wallpaper) are engaging and invite the readers to linger over each page.
My Cat, Coon Cat is a large book with a hard cover and easy-to-read print. The rhyming text could be read by an early-reader or read aloud by a seasoned reader to anyone of any age. The simple, lyrical verse that flows from page to page will make you smile. It is an easy-to-follow, heartwarming storyline that will win the hearts of parents and children alike.
Product review by Melissa Cummings
The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC
As a girl greets a stray Maine coon cat she finds on her front porch, she poses questions to the cat, while gradually working to befriend it ("Hi cat, coon cat,/ Heard you at the door.../ Brought a mouse to our new house?/ Did you live here before?"). In singsong verse, the girl wonders if the cat needs a home, if it's wild or tame, and if it's hungry. After the coon cat naps in the sun, is chased by a dog, and interacts with the girl's small kitten, she brings it inside. As it curls up at bedtime with her and the kitten, she gushes a final welcome: "Tiger Cat, how is that?/ Now you have a name!/ I've never had a friend like you./ I'm so glad you came!" Fuller's (Moon Loon) sleepy narrative is enlivened a bit by Brett's (L Is for Lobster: A Maine Alphabet) large-scale art, which showcases the Maine spring in full bloom and offers close-up images of cats that feline lovers will savor. Ages 4-8. (Aug.)
Publishers Weekly Review: September 16, 2011