Natalie Ng, gifted with the Talent of being able to communicate with cats, embarks on an impetuous adventure as a movie riffing off film classic Ferris Bueller’s Day Off is filmed at her Chicago-area high school.
Natalie comes from a Talented family, but her two sisters and her parents all possess high-grade Talents such as blending like a chameleon, knowing when people are lying or having an ultrasensitive sense of smell. Still, Nat’s unique ability to understand cats means she’s the only one to hear celebrity blogger Easton’s cat screaming for help because his owner has been kidnapped and replaced with a look-alike. Since there’s no one else ready and able to rescue Easton, Nat and her pair of slightly off-beat friends take on the job. This leads to one perilous situation after another, many of them featuring the italicized thoughts—appropriately laconic and snarky—of the various cats that Nat seeks out for help. Her bumpy budding romance with classmate Ian adds an amusing love interest to the mix. The fantasy elements, solidly grounded in an otherwise real world, seem ever-so-believable. Lively conversation, strong characterizations and a fast pace make this a breezy read. The funny feline thoughts are catnip for the audience.
A worthwhile adventure and an easy sell for feline fanciers who already know what their pets are saying. (author's note) (Fantasy. 11 & up)