ROTTEN RALPH by Jack Gantos

ROTTEN RALPH

by , illustrated by

KIRKUS REVIEW

Rotten Ralph is a mean-eyed, saw-toothed, bright red cat, so bad he makes Awful Alexander (see above) look like a goody-goody. In fact his behavior is a seamless mix of bratty kid and badmannered tomcat--he smashes his bicycle into the dining room table, then chases birds in the back yard when he's hungry. ("You're worse than rotten, Ralph.") After Ralph disrupts the acts at the circus he's left behind and ends up in a cage, fed stale popcorn and old candy apples, when he refuses to work. He's eventually found in the street--menaced by gangs of feline toughs and suffering from "alley fever"--and rehabilitated by his forgiving family; chastened but not broken, he's last seen snitching lobster from the dining room table. Rudel has a grand time with Ralph's wicked antics--picture a lusher, more emotive Byron Barton--and her hyper-naive playfulness is cathartic and just what a devil like Ralph has coming to him.
Pub Date: Feb. 19th, 1980
ISBN: 0395292026
Page count: 52pp
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1st, 1976




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