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Young Adult Fiction Lollapalooza

Poetry Friday: Mrs. McTats and Her Houseful of Cats

Do you remember the catalogue called A Common Reader? Now defunct, and in bankruptcy (as I read on Wikipedia), it was a delightful compendium of reading recommendations, including a variety of children's books. Several years ago Junior's beloved Grandma ordered Mrs. McTats and Her Houseful of Cats (Margaret K. McElderry, Simon & Schuster, 2001) from A Common Reader for him, and the picture book continues to occupy a place of honor on his bookshelves.

I mention Mrs. McTats here on Poetry Friday because it's a rhyming picture book. It's also an alphabet book; the cats' names begin with letters from A to, well, I won't tell you because I don't want to spoil the plot. The author is Alyssa Satin Capucilli, who also wrote the Biscuit series of beginning readers.

Mrs. McTats is a cat magnet. At first she lives in a cozy cottage with one kitty named Abner, for whom she buys fish at the market. "But when she got home,/there came a scratch on the door,/and in walked two cats./Was there room for two more?" Of course there is. Basil and Curly are just the beginning. In Joan Rankin's watercolors, each cat is quite different from the others, and the lovable, zaftig Mrs. McTats welcomes them all.  If we ever end up with a feline called Toesie, you'll know the origins of the name (#20 in the McTats household). Junior still thinks that's the funniest name for a cat ever.

Thank you, Grandma!

Today's Poetry Friday roundup is at The Simple and the Ordinary.


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I wondered why I stopped getting that catalog. I enjoyed their thoughtful selections and mini reviews.

It was thoughtful, Wisteria. I liked it, too.

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