Author: Vanita Oelschlanger
Illustrated by Kristin Blackwood.
DISCLOSURE: Unlike the majority of reviews in this blog, I've neither bought this book nor borrowed it from the library. This is a "galley" copy ebook, supplied by Net Galley. I'm not receiving (nor will I expect to receive or accept) remuneration for this review. The chance to read a new book is often enough reward aplenty!
Yes, it's Vanita Oelschlanger again, with Kristin Blackwood at the richly colorful paint brush and today's topic is Carrot is a cat. I'll bet you'll never guess what color she is.... She has a great life, inexplicably chasing mice, but also tending to one who has the flu. She loves her home and family, and the opportunities for a fish dinner at Finney's(!). I had a cat of the same hue, named Ginger. Still no idea what color she was?
One day Carrot sees a luxury yacht (probably pronounced Mangrove-Throat-Wobbler - and if you get that reference, you probably like flying circuses....) cruise by, and espies a gorgeous white fluffy cat on the deck playing with a toy mouse. The cat's name is Buffy. No word of whether she fights vampire cats.
This sight is a bit too much for Carrot, who now finds her days occupied not with having fun and tasty snacks, but with thoughts of what her own life would be like if she had the opportunities and life-style enjoyed by Buffy. She daydreams her time away in idle imaginings.
Being a practical cat - a practi-cat, no doubt - Carrot soon realizes the futility of her day-dreaming. She begins to understand that not all is not well in Buffy-world. Buffy doesn't have a host of family legs to rub against. She doesn't have real organic USDA grade A-1 mice to chase, nor does she have yummy snacks from Finney's. She leads a rather sad and isolated life, surrounded by fish but none to eat.
Carrot rather quickly and quite fully realizes what she would lose, and she re-values her own life, deciding that the catnip isn't always greener on the other side of the mouse. This is a great story for kids who might sometimes wish they had been born someone else, or who might look enviously at the life others lead. We cannot always control what happens to us, but we can control how we feel about it and how much we take or lose out of each day that we have. Worthy of a look for cat lovers and their children!