Kirkus Reviews QR Code
INVENT-A-PET by Vicky Fang


by Vicky Fang ; illustrated by Tidawan Thaipinnarong

Pub Date: May 5th, 2020
ISBN: 978-1-4549-3381-6
Publisher: Sterling

With the help of a machine, Katie tries to create a unique pet.

Katie doesn’t want a “common” pet, like a goldfish—she wants something “extraordinary.” When her mom gifts her a mysterious machine, Katie is excited to create her pet. Curious, she puts three items—a soccer ball, grass, a carrot—into the input slots, and out pops a rotund, green bunny. Katie eagerly adds different things, like a flower for beauty and a feather to make wings, but the animals never come out right. She decides to figure out how the machine works. By inputting the same items, then changing one variable each time, Katie discovers that the different inputs control the size, color, and animal. As she is experimenting, Katie fails to notice the number of animals running loose in her living room. After turning her driveway into a pet-adoption facility, Katie finally creates her extraordinary pet. This silly tale is a smart take on a child’s imagination and problem-solving. With fun onomatopoeia, it’s a great read-aloud, especially apt as part of a lesson on the scientific method. The cartoon illustrations, particularly those of the invented pets, are busy and bright, and readers will enjoy guessing along with Katie what animal might be coming out. Katie and her mother present Asian.

A delightful introduction to scientific experimentation—with impossibly cute pets.

(Picture book. 3-7)