A duck likes to pretend to be other animals, much to the consternation of a very pragmatic cat.
A gray cat wakes to find a duck (which looks to be a male mallard) proclaiming, “I am a cat. Meow.” The cat knows this is preposterous. “You are not a cat. You are a duck. Quack, quack.” But, the duck explains, “Meow is what I like to say.” As the pair good-naturedly go back and forth, the duck fashions an acorn collar and two pointy ears made out of leaves to look more catlike. The cat becomes more and more frustrated. Realizing logic is needed, the cat tries to get the duck to understand its mistake: “Do you have whiskers that tickle the air? / Sharp claws? A taste for mice?” “No,” the duck admits, but continues meowing just the same. This drives the cat bonkers, to the point of running after the duck shouting, “Quack. Quack. Quack. Quack. Quack.” No amount of shouting can change Duck’s mind. In fact, no resolution is really ever reached. The duck decides to be a cow next, and the cat gives up in exasperation. As this is told entirely in dialogue presented in speech bubbles, with short, repetitive phrases (most containing the word “no”), beginning readers can have fun with the cat’s mounting frustration.
Silly arguments abound in life, but readers who may be wishing for a duo to replace a certain dialogue-happy elephant and pig will not find it here. (Picture book. 3-6)