Kitty Cat, Kitty Cat, Are You Waking Up?
by Martin, Bill, Jr.; Sampson, Michael; Bryant, Laura J. (ILT)

Procrastinating Kitty Cat is distracted by so many things while she is getting ready for school in the morning that she almost misses her bus.

In many households, getting children out of bed, dressed, fed, and ready for school is an action-packed daily drama, filled with unexpected glitches and strange twists of direction. This delightfully comic rhyming book sets the struggle in a cat household, with one adorably recalcitrant kitten reenacting actions that engender the parental response, how can this be taking so long? For every hurry-up directive the mother cat gives, the kitten has one refrain: "Just a second, Mother." Readers see the kitten snuggling on the pillow, standing on its head in bed, tearing apart the bedroom in search of socks, discovering and chasing a mouse. All is mayhem and panic. A tiny mouse serves as an interested observer in each watercolor, until he becomes prey, and then one very relieved escapee, as the kitten is finally swept off to school. Children should enjoy this recasting of their own getting-ready sagas. Copyright 2008 Booklist Reviews.

Charming and forgettable, this slight collaboration has undeniable appeal but little real substance. Kitty Cat is an adorable, anthropomorphized version of a poky preschooler. She keeps her mother waiting while she shrugs off sleep, practices her purr, misplaces her clothing and chases a mischievous mouse. Watercolor-and-colored pencil illustrations focus on the endearing grey-and-white kitten while including plenty of pretty patterns and interesting textures. To Bryant's credit, her illustrations succeed in being engaging without being excessively cute or overly saccharine. The rhyming couplets, unfortunately, do not fare as well. The sing-song rhythm and repeated phrases get tiresome despite the brevity of the text. Some rhymes seem forced (what exactly is "a sleepy buttercup"?), though others nicely capture the playfulness of a young child. Given the perennial allure of cats as characters and of Martin's reputation, odds are good this will find a wide audience. Young listeners may enjoy hearing it read through once, but they're more likely to pore over the pictures than request repeat readings. Adequate but uninspired. (Picture book. 3-6) Copyright Kirkus 2008 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

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