What’s it like to own a pet?
In this diminutive book that addresses readers directly, after picking a name for their new cat, readers turn the page to find him sleeping. “Who’s that curled in a ball? / Hey, sleepy cat, it’s time to get up! / Can you help wake him? / Call out his name / and then turn the page.” Each double-page spread in this Italian import asks readers and listeners to interact with the kitty in the illustration; the directions that conclude each page of text are printed in green ink. After readers follow the instruction, they will see that the cat has woken up and is stretching, and that means he wants to be stroked gently. He purrs. What happens if you tickle him under his chin? He flops over and presents his belly…but wait! He has fleas; better squish them. He needs to be sheltered from rain and dried off if he gets wet anyway. Here Borando’s happy orange puss, depicted in simple, thick-lined cartoons, fluffs up comically, looking like a smiling, orange Brillo pad with a tail. It certainly is a good virtual pet (though the toys and food on the opening endpapers show signs of hard loving on the closing endpapers). Puppy people can enjoy the canine version, The Dog Book, by Lorenzo Clerici, Borando’s minibombo partner.
Interactive fun best enjoyed one-on-one. (Picture book. 2-6)