Written & Illustrated by Joseph Low
Children’s Picture Book: K-3
Stars: 2.5 (out of 5)
Summary: This is a story of a cat that tries to fool Mouse into coming over for dinner so that Cat can eat Mouse. In the end though, Mouse is prepared and arrives with Dog, who would like to eat Cat. The story continues as they try to outwit one another, until finally, mouse outwits Cat and Cat is chased away for good.
I found this story a bit confusing to follow. The idea is interesting, as the animals try to outwit one another. What I found though is that I got confused about who was attending whose house and which animals were attending with which animals. The plot was a bit confusing. I had to go back and reread pages often in order to re-orient myself with dinner guest pairs. I’m not sure that a young child might be able to keep the characters straight. The only characters that I was able to connect with were Cat and Mouse, for they were the only two who had a strong purpose and sense of character. The rest all acted as just fillers, even though there were subtle reasons for each of them. Those reasons were kind of lost in trying to navigate the plot.
What might be fun to do with such a story though is to “play the story.” In a small group of students, each student could play a character as the plot progresses. This would likely help students keep the characters and their interactions straight. It is also a really fun story to use when learning about predicting, because each night, we recognize that a new animal is going to show up, but we don’t know which one. It might be fun to try and predict which animals might become story characters and why. If the students were learning about animals it might be a particularly fun book to read, for they could apply knowledge they would be learning about animals to make predications.