MR. PUTTER & TABBY CATCH THE COLD by Cynthia Rylant
Kirkus Star

MR. PUTTER & TABBY CATCH THE COLD

by , illustrated by
Age Range: 6 - 9

KIRKUS REVIEW

There is a note of melancholy in this tale from Putterland, a place more typical of mirth and everyday adventures that have sprung a leak. Here, Mr. Putter is laid low by a cold—Howard decks him out with dark circles under his drooping lids and a palpable malaise—and “colds aren’t so much fun when you’re old,” he says to his cat Tabby. You don’t have to be over 40 to feel the sting of that sentiment. Nor does it help that, Tabby excepting, Mr. Putter lives alone. So as not to slip ever deeper into the existentialism of it all, Rylant sends Mr. Putter’s neighbor, Mrs. Teaberry, to the rescue. Well, she’s not allowed over because Mr. Putter doesn’t want her to get his cold, so she sends an emissary, her dog Zeke, who shuffles over with chicken soup and then hot tea in a thermos and finally, best of all, an adventure book. All these goodies remind Mr. Putter of those bygone days when he was a kid with a cold, when “he had almost liked colds. He always got spoiled.” He gets spoiled again now, but not before that creeping ache has stolen over the story, testifying to the need for friendships, acts of mercy, and simple kindness. A powerful piece of Putter. (Easy reader. 6-9)

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2002
ISBN: 0-15-202414-X
Page count: 44pp
Publisher: Harcourt
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15th, 2002




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