WHISKERS ONCE AND ALWAYS by Doris Orgel

WHISKERS ONCE AND ALWAYS

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KIRKUS REVIEW

This brief story is packed with feelings and thoughts familiar to children who have experienced the death of a cherished pet. Rebecca Suslow, heroine of My War with Mrs. Galloway, returns to tell what happens when her cat Whiskers falls and is fatally injured. Becca's mother, Dr. Suslow, helps make Whiskers comfortable, since the cat seems only to have hurt her leg, but by the next evening Whiskers is going into shock. Rushed to the vet, she dies of internal injuries. Afterward, Becca feels not only sad but angry and confused. She punches Jason, a boy who asks her a touchy question, and when she won't explain why, she is sent to the principal to tell him her story. Mr. Bmz-zo helps Becca to understand her feelings, paving the way toward acceptance of Whiskers' death. This touching, well-plotted story has two flaws. Despite Dr. Suslow's excuse, it is unbelievable that Whiskers is not taken to the vet sooner. And the implications of Jason's remark and Mr. Bruzzo's ""between-the-lines"" explanation of Becca's reaction to it will escape most young readers. Nevertheless, they will sympathize with Becca and feel better when she comes to terms with the death and is able to create a very personal memorial to Whiskers.

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1986
Page count: 82pp
Publisher: Viking