Friday, December 01, 2017

Meowrr, Humbug! Grumpy Cat's First Worst Christmas by Christy Webster

"It's time for Christmas, Grumpy Cat! 'Tis the season to be jolly!" Happy Kitty says.

"'Tis the season to let me alone!" growls Grumpy Cat.

"Look! It's SNOWING!" Happy Kitty continues.

Perched on the mantle, where big, bright wooden letters spell out a cheery NOEL, his droopy eyelids at half mast, Grumpy Cat responds by pushing the E and L to the floor to spell out his disapproval.


But Happy Kitty bundles up and bounces outside to build a smiling snow cat. Grumpy Cat's snow sculpture has twiggy, beetling eyebrows and a familiar frown. But Happy Kitty is living in a wonderland of snow.

"I'd rather live in a Wonderland of NO!" grouches Grumpy Cat.

Then it's time to decorate the Christmas tree. Happy Kitty is in his element, but Grumpy Cat decorates his own little cactus and stealthily pushes Kitty's ornaments off onto the floor. While Happy Kitty suggests that it's time to wrap some presents, Grouchy Cat declares it's time to rip some presents. And when Christmas carolers come with their jolly FA LA LAS, Grumpy Cat has but one request:

"Silent Night!"

Happy Kitty gets into putting out cookies for Santa Claus, going on and on about what he might get for Christmas.

"All I want for Christmas is for it to be over," mutters Grouchy Cat.

While most of us are more than ready to make merry, Christmas grouches are not unknown in literature, and Grumpy Cat is in the company of some great ones--e. g., Dicken's Ebenezer Scrooge and Dr. Seuss's Grinch--and Christy Webster's frowning feline is firmly in that curmudgeonly tradition in her Grumpy Cat's First Worst Christmas (Grumpy Cat) (Big Golden Book) (Golden Books, 2017). Christmas deniers are usually a drag, but Webster's cantankerous cat's quips are actually quite clever, and in this story of an odd couple of cats, illustrator Steph Laboris sneakily adds sight gags of Grumpy Cat in the background, slyly shoving things off horizontal surfaces and generally putting the kabosh on Christmas cheer.

Based on those viral photos of a real cat, Grumpy has become the new comic strip character, joining the galaxy of quirky cartoon cat stars like Felix the Cat, Krazy Kat, Sylvester, and Garfield. Grumpy Cat's other stories include The Little Grumpy Cat that Wouldn't (Grumpy Cat) (Little Golden Book) and A Is for Awful: A Grumpy Cat ABC Book (Grumpy Cat) (Little Golden Book).

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