Who wouldn’t love to have an adorable, little (at first, anyway), fuzzy pet around the house?
In a switcheroo that even catless readers will spot immediately, O’Connor opens with a small girl sporting a winsome smile and big, scribbly hair—crouching next to a carton labeled “Free Raptors.” Looking in the clean and simple illustrations like a blue dust mop with big eyes (and impressive claws), one “teensy and tiny” selection is carried home. There, it is lavished with affection as it sleeps all day, chases around madly at night and, even after growing to the size of a wolfhound, jumps on the bed early in the morning. And it remains, despite the way it steadily regards the oblivious young narrator with the same intent, inscrutable expression bestowed on birds temptingly perched outside the window, a hug-worthy “best thing ever.” The besotted little girl is just about as adorable as her raptor, with two enormous pom-pom ponytails framing her dark face.
So cute. Who wouldn’t want one? (Picture book. 5-8)