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Mary Casanova - Books for Young People
Some Cat! by Mary Casanova and Ard Hoyt
Some Cat!
written by Mary Casanova
illus. by Ard Hoyt
Farrar Straus & Giroux,
June 2012
(HC) 978-0-37437-123-4
Ard Hoyt, the illustrator of
One-Dog Canoe, Some Dog!,
Some Cat!, Utterly Ottery Day,

and Utterly Otterly Night.
Some Cat from Autographed books!
Some Cat!
Book Description:

Violet has always imagined ruling a kingdom with sharp claws and velvet paws, so when she is adopted and goes to live with two dogs, she immediately takes over with a Meowww! Hisssss! and Spat! Poor George and Zippity try to befriend Violet, but they get nowhere. One afternoon, while her new family is out fishing, Violet is awakened by some stray dogs who chase poor Violet into a corner. Luckily, George and Zippity arrive home just in time to help.
Awards & Recogition
Missouri Association of School Libarians - Show Me Readers Award, Preliminary Nominee

Violet is a thin little cat who sits in a cage at the shelter. Imagining herself ruling a kingdom “with sharp claws andvelvet paws,” she arches her royal back and frightens away most people with her meows and hisses. A man and woman decide to give Violet a chance and take her home, where she quickly shows their two dogs who is in charge. George and Zippity, who first appeared in Casanova’s Some Dog! (Farrar, 2007), stand aside as the cat eats first, plays with one dog’s favorite toy, and sleeps in the other’s hammock. The humans wonder if she will work out. When three stray dogs invade Violet’s kingdom, she runs for her life. George and Zippity come to her rescue, arching their canine backs and snarling until the intruders flee. The grateful cat settles down at last, content to rule with purrs and soft velvet claws. Expressive watercolor-and-pencil illustrations capture the personalities of the animals and the kindness of their humans. Often-repeated animal cries–Violet’s “Meowww!” with Zippity’s “Ya-yippity!” and George’s “Wa-roo-roo-roo-roo!”–make this a fun read-aloud and a real child pleaser. It will spark discussions about shelter animals and the importance of allowing them time to acclimate to their new homes.

—Mary Jean Smith,
formerly at Southside Elementary School, Lebanon, TN

Stuck in a shelter, Violet the cat never had a good life, but she nonetheless feels she should be a kitty queen in a fresh environment. Unfortunately, whenever anyone stops to look at her, she goes, “Meowwww! Hisssss! Spat!”—and they leave with a kitten instead. Finally, however, an older couple takes her home. Instead of being grateful, she gets into fights with their dogs, eats their food, and grabs their toys. Then a pack of stray dogs enters the yard, and Violet learns the advantages of having friends—canine and human—on her side. The simple story is heightened by Hoyt’s energetic pencil artwork that captures the broad strokes—leaping, climbing, clashing—as well the wonderfully amusing positions a kitty can get into, including the classic tummy up, back down, legs akimbo stretch. There are more subtle moments, too, like the satisfaction on the face of a cat being sprung from a shelter. Kids won’t be able to resist the worried-looking Violet on the cover—and they’ll be thrilled over how it all works out.

—Ilene Cooper, Booklist

Violet the cat finds it hard to make friends with her new owners’ two dogs until they show their loyalty despite her unfriendliness.

Casanova’s energetic text begins with a brief mention of Violet’s previous home, where there was “too little food and too much shouting.” Presumably that’s why she hisses and spits at the people who stop by her cage at the shelter. Most walk away, but one couple decides to take her home. Once there she terrorizes George and Zippity, heroes of Some Dog! (2007). Things change after a trio of stray dogs finds her alone in the yard. Once rescued, Violet undergoes a serious attitude adjustment. From the cover that shows a wide-eyed, anxious-looking cat to the implication that Violet’s earlier experiences shaped her personality to the fairly scary attack by the stray dogs, this is not a typically perky pet-adoption tale. Hoyt’s illustrations, which appear to combine watercolor and pencil, set the story in and around a house by a lake and offer a mostly realistic look at the action. The cozy setting and some visual humor lighten the mood, as does Casanova’s use of nonsense words to convey the barking and meowing of the various animals.

Just as prickly as its heroine, this book requires an audience ready for its sobering back story.

—Kirkus Reviews

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