Gr 3-4-When Molly's cat, Flipper, runs away, the girl and her best friend, Claudia, hatch various schemes to find it, quarreling and making up periodically over several days. Meanwhile, Molly struggles to keep her mother's pregnancy a secret until her parents are sure nothing will go wrong. Flipper finally returns home carrying a dead bird, and Molly is horrified. In the end, she forgives her pet, and her mother gets a good medical report. This story is too slight to sustain interest and what little plot there is doesn't hang together. Molly's extreme reaction to her cat's hunting behavior seems overly naive and inconsistent with her earlier desperation about his disappearance. The best thing about this book is Ransome's cover art.-Jacqueline Rose, Lake Oswego Public Library, OR
Molly Newman is not about to sit still when her cat, Flipper, escapes outdoors, so she asks her best friend, Claudia, for help in putting up signs and canvassing neighbors. But things don't go smoothly. Molly and Claudia disagree on the plan of action. Even baking sour cream cookies for a reward turns into a disaster. Days later, when Flipper returns carrying a dead bird, Molly is beside herself, never having imagined the hunting instinct of cats. When Molly inadvertently tells Claudia about her mom's pregnancy--a family secret--she feels even worse. Working things out is a big job for her. Here is a beginning chapter book that revolves around everyday happenings, and readers will easily share Molly's feelings and concerns. Occasional realistic black-and-white drawings help the plot along.