Thursday, July 29, 2010

"BLARGIE! BLARGIE?" Cat the Cat, Who Is That? by Mo Willems

Cat the Cat surely likes her friends. There's good buddy Mouse the Mouse, her inexplicably best friend. Then there's the slightly stuffy Duck the Duck and surfer dude Fish the Fish, all with their own style of greeting, all as familiar as her own whiskers.

But then, Cat the Cat meets up with a genuine stranger.

Stacking blocks in her own neighborhood, there is a truly indescribable someone--or someTHING!



I... HAVE... NO... IDEA.

It's tall. Its eyes are on stalks. It has three legs.

And FOUR arms.

And it can talk. "Blargie! Blargie!" it burbles at her.

Cat the Cat's tail goes all bottle-brushy and her ears are at full alert.

But the Alien seems harmless, with what might be loosely construed as a smile on what might be interpreted as its face. So Cat the Cat gets brave! Maybe.... Could "it" even be a friend?

Cat the Cat tries to twist her tongue around the creature's greeting. She tries out her own version of "blargie!" The creature blargies right back!

A friendship is born.

Mo Willems' ever perky Cat the Cat is back with yet another very simple early reader, Cat the Cat, Who Is That? (Balzer & Bray, 2010). Into this little book of very few basic words, Willems pours all his considerable and lauded skills of illustration and dialogue into turning his basic line drawings into individuals with their own individual personalities. For very early emergent readers not quite ready for his award-winning Elephant and Piggie early reading series, the adventures of Cat the Cat are simply the cat's whiskers.

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