The Cat Came Back

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Overview

This handsome book has a built-in audience — the thousands of children who have delighted in Fred Penner's music and signature song, The Cat Came Back. The story is simple: old Mr. Johnson is driven round the bend by a pesky cat who just won't let him nap in peace. The familiar words and infectious rhythm invite children to join in and read along. Renee Reichert's luscious pastels complete the entertainment, making a standout picture book and a perfect gift.

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Overview

This handsome book has a built-in audience — the thousands of children who have delighted in Fred Penner's music and signature song, The Cat Came Back. The story is simple: old Mr. Johnson is driven round the bend by a pesky cat who just won't let him nap in peace. The familiar words and infectious rhythm invite children to join in and read along. Renee Reichert's luscious pastels complete the entertainment, making a standout picture book and a perfect gift.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Longtime children's performer Penner serves up his purrfectly perky rendition of this traditional folk song for picture book fans. Like the proverbial bad penny, a certain stray cat keeps turning up-on Mr. Johnson's doorstep. Calling the humane society, handing the kitty off to pirates and even blasting the furry feline into outer space do not do the trick; the cat always finds its way back, none the worse for wear. At last, by sheer determination, the cat curls onto Mr. Johnson's lap and presumably into his heart. In her picture-book debut, Reichert's rich and creamy pastels capture the sleek orange superkitty in all its silly glory, whether sporting an eye patch or decked out in a space suit. Mr. Johnson's stubbly beard, tiny round spectacles and frequently flabbergasted facial expressions add to the jaunty, comic tone. Ages 4-8. (Sept.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2-A very large orange cat with mischievous green eyes and a frustrated, bespectacled farmer decked out in overalls are at odds in this rollicking picture-book version of Penner's song. It's the art that's the real star here as it follows the man's efforts to rid himself of the persistent animal. His attempts begin modestly with building the cat his very own house, and get more and more outlandish, from dropping him into the sea to shooting him off into space, none of which work, of course: "-the cat came back the very next day-.He just couldn't stay away." Full-bleed spreads capture the antics of the annoyed farmer and determined feline as well as the animal onlookers. The book has all of the elements of a funny children's song/story, with extreme measures matched up with hilarious results. It's loads of fun.-Jane Marino, Bronxville Public Library, NY Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Like that cat, the song keeps coming back in a multitude of recorded and printed versions-but never in better company than here. On to each terse verse and chorus, Reichert hangs plenty of subplot and detail, depicted in a luminous, soft-edged style (think Kevin Hawkes) that plays nicely to the hilariously exaggerated dismay of toothless old bachelor Mr. Johnson and his finned and feathered pets. The ginger cat earns a place on Johnson's lap only after coming back from the Humane Society with several feline friends, from the bottom of the sea with a mass of pirate gold, from the North Pole in a gift-wrapped box, and finally from outer space with a pair of green-skinned, three-eyed rescuers. Unlike many songs, the lyrics work equally well read or sung. A fine showcase, and a memorable children's debut, for Reichert. (Picture book. 5-7)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781596430303
  • Publisher: Roaring Brook Press
  • Publication date: 9/1/2005
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.76 (w) x 11.26 (h) x 0.27 (d)

Meet the Author


Fred Penner has recorded 12 albums of music for children, with sales of well over one million copies. He tours continually throughout the United States and Canada but makes his home in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.

Renee Reichert is the recipient of the Society of Illustrators' Certificate of Merit, among other awards. This is her first picture book. She lives in Centerport, New York, with her family and her 18-year-old orange cat, Theodore, who was the inspiration for the cat in this book.

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted July 17, 2013

    The Cat Came Back is a song/story, although the verses are not f

    The Cat Came Back is a song/story, although the verses are not from the version I am most familiar. However, I think I actually like them a bit better. They still are silly and become progressively sillier, but somehow, they start out kinder, more humane. Anyway, it's still a funny book.
    The illustrations for this version are extremely rich and color-drenched, and, yes, silly, although the last one, my favorite, is quite sweet. This book is an overall winner.

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