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PUMPKIN CAT by Anne Mortimer


by Anne Mortimer, illustrated by Anne Mortimer

Age Range: 3 - 5

Pub Date: Aug. 1st, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-06-187485-7
Publisher: Katherine Tegen/HarperCollins

Cat wonders how pumpkins grow, and Mouse is happy to show him, in this seasonal offering for beginning readers.

A simple explanation of the seed-to-pumpkin process sets the animals to filling a pot with soil, planting seeds, watering the plant, waiting and watching it grow, making a scarecrow, picking the pumpkin and carving a jack-o’-lantern. A more thorough exploration can be found in Gail Gibbons’ Pumpkin Book (1999), with which beginning readers may already be familiar, so this brief story may be better suited to preschoolers just testing their green thumbs. In her signature style, Mortimer focuses on the cute, cuddly qualities of Cat and Mouse. Oval-framed close-ups and full-bleed spreads capture the unlikely animal friends working together. The final page is the most informative, presenting fleshed-out instructions for growing pumpkins, but ultimately there is little to harvest here.

Sweet but bland, this title could still find an audience in autumn. (Early reader. 3-5)