Letter-Perfect: A Bad Kitty Christmas by Nick Bruel
TWAS THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS,
AND ALL THROUGH THE CITY,
NOT A CREATURE WAS STIRRING...
EXCEPT FOR BAD KITTY.
Tumbled trash cans in a littered, snow-covered alley, a tiny black cat encircled by rats--how did that scamp of a Bad Kitty wind up in such a situation on Christmas Eve?
It all begins on a dark pre-Christmas morn when Bad Kitty's beleaguered owner is awakened to a clatter downstairs.
THAT'S WHEN I FOUND KITTY
IN THE MIDST OF HER CAPER.
SHE'D TORN THROUGH THE GIFTS
AND WAS COVERED WITH PAPER.
It's a Kitty catastrophe, in alphabetical order, no less. The decked halls have been besieged, besmirched, and de-decked!
THE MANGER WAS MAULED.
THE NUTCRACKER NAILED.
THE ORNAMENTS OUSTED,
THE POINSETTIA WAS PAILED.
It seems Bad Kitty was displeased with her Yuletide haul, preferring an alphabetical list of critters from Apes and Bears to Yak fried with Zebra Tail.
Bad Kitty is admonished and scolded and made to feel guilty for her greed, but after a grueling cleanup, with a still grouchy Kitty and the ever clueless, ever-drooling Puppy in the backseat, Kitty's overwhelmed owner sets forth for the annual Christmas Eve visit with Uncle Murray. Still miffed, Bad Kitty launches herself out the window and disappears down the darkling mean streets, and it looks like she will be spending the night before Christmas (and many nights to follow) in an alley with only rats for company.
But lucky Kitty. An old woman notices her plight and scoops her up to take home for the night.
I'LL TAKE YOU UPSTAIRS
TO DRY OFF YOUR FUR.
"WOULD YOU LIKE SOME FOOD?
AND THIS KITTY SAID--
In her shabby one-room flat, the old woman splits her Yuletide can of sardines with Kitty, and sitting with her beside her tiny table-top tree, she pulls out her album and shares her warm memories of Christmas past with Kitty, as well as a bit of her well-earned wisdom:
"LITTLE CAT, THIS IS WHAT
CHRISTMAS SHOULD BE.
IT'S NOT ABOUT STUFF FROM
A BIG SPENDING SPREE.
CHRISTMAS IS ALL ABOUT ... FAMILY.
But unbeknown to Bad Kitty, there is someone--someone from her family--with the right stuff to sniff out her trail and bring her home on Christmas Eve to her own long-suffering family. It's Puppy, who bravely followed her out the car window and has been resolutely tracking her down through the snow, right to the old woman's door.
It's a Happy Christmas to all in Nick Bruel's top-selling new picture book, A Bad Kitty Christmas (Roaring Brook Press, 2011). There's no kitty like Bad Kitty, and here she returns in a full-sized picture book format in all her comic cat glory. There are hilarious illustrations of Kitty and Puppy, a sly spoof of the old "Night Before Christmas" story, three awesome abecedariuses in rollicking rhyme interspersed in the text, and a sweet story--one of malicious mischief, a prodigal pussycat, remorseful redemption, and family found--by the close of this one, with to all a good night after all.
Take this Kitty home for Christmas!
But don't just take it from me. As you may have noticed, I'm an unabashed Bad Kitty fan, but I'm not the only one. As Kirkus Reviews writes, “A witty and original take on the old Christmas Eve chestnut, with a sweet twist to season the fun.” PURRRR!