Smitten With Kittens
Florence Minor, author
A former documentary film editor, Florence has collaborated with her husband, Wendell, on many projects, including If You Were a Penguin, If You Were a Panda Bear, and How to Be a Bigger Bunny. They now live and create in Connecticut.
Read more about Florence
Wendell Minor, illustrator
Wendell Minor has designed more than two thousand book covers and written and/or illustrated more than fifty children's books, including many in collaboration with Jean Craighead George. Recent titles include Night Train, Night Train; Trapped!; How Big Could Your Pumpkin Grow?; and If You Were a Panda Bear.
Read more about Wendell.
- Coming soon!
School Library Journal
The title rhymes and so does the text in this adorable book. In orange capital letters, the rhymes are set off from the rest of the black-and-white text. The words nap, lap, pose, and nose pop off the page, making them easy for early readers to identify. A variety of kittens are lovingly depicted in Minor’s charcoal drawings, each one with a cute little pink nose. Their poses have been intricately re-created, although the kittens at rest look more realistic than those in motion. Monochromatic art is accented with an occasional orange monarch or bright red cardinal. Back matter includes 10 fun facts about cats and cat ownership for adults to share with little ones. VERDICT Hand this book to any junior cat lover to read alone or with a friend.
Delicate graphite illustrations and gentle rhymes extol playful curiosity in this kitten-smitten picture book by the married collaborators. The cuddle factor is high as the animals’ smudgy heads peek around the edges of the book’s opening pages: “Who isn’t smitten/ with a kitten’s sweet MEW// and all the cute things/ that kittens will DO?” Accented with occasional pops of color (a tongue, a nose, a bowl, a bird), sketches show various gray kitties observing a red cardinal, gazing cross-eyed at a monarch butterfly, peering out from a jumble of unspooled toilet paper, and otherwise exploring. A final close-up of one fuzzy feline “all curled up in a cozy lap” is practically pettable. Back matter includes 10 “fun facts” about cat development and care.
“Who isn’t smitten / with a kitten’s sweet MEW / and all the cute things / that kittens will DO?” Certainly not the Minors, who explore these appealing creatures in lilting verse and digitally enhanced graphite artwork. They note kittens’ penchant for posing, fondness for mischief, and inclination to hide in tight spaces, as well as their need for naps after a busy day. The verses are playful and skillfully rhymed, highlighting behaviors most young readers will recognize. Wendell Minor’s lifelike, mostly black-and-white illustrations eschew backgrounds in order to focus on his tabby subjects. He is particularly adept at capturing feline expressions: cross-eyed with a butterfly on its nose; staring at a mirror, back arched in fierceness; wide-eyed innocence peeking out of a pile of toilet paper; and dreaming of chasing colorful balls. Most scenes are brightened by a small spot of color: an orange butterfly, a red cardinal, or a blue ball of yarn. Appended with additional information about cat behavior, this will be welcomed by cat-lovers everywhere.
Fanatical kitty fans or not, readers of this witty and sweet rhyming book are sure to be smitten with the kittens skillfully sketched across the pages. The tiny, furry felines are depicted in only black, white, and shades of grey, with light pink noses, yet their personalities are bursting off each page. First, the reader learns that the book will be about cute things kittens do. Then, the reader is playfully taken through the many adventures that a kitten may encounter in a day. Eating, bathing, playing, and even making trouble. W. Minor’s illustrations include the subtle addition of color to a focus point that coordinates with each line written by F. Minor. Minor and Minor accurately write about and illustrate kittens in a way only those truly smitten with kittens could. An appropriate inclusion of facts can be found at the end of the book. Young children will learn about kittens in a fun and entertaining way.
ISBN: 978-1-63289-965-1 EPUB
Page count: 32
9 x 9