Saturday, May 30, 2015

Cat Girl's Day Off, by Kimberly Pauley

Move over, Grumpy Cat!
Summer Reading signup begins on Friday (less than a week away) and, with our theme being Superheroes, I'd like to kick things off with Kimberly Pauley's fun middle-grade novel, Cat Girl's Day Off. Although the heroine of this tale (tail?) has neither the power of flight or cool, butt-kicking gadgets, she's got some pretty cool powers in her own right. Or, at least, the right sort of powers to save the day.

Natalie Ng comes from a family of uber-talnted people. Her little sister is a certified genius, her older sister can fly (and has X-ray vision to boot), and both her parents are skilled enough to be employed with the Bureau of Extrasensory Management and Regulation. And Natalie's power? Well...she can communicate with animals. Specifically, cats. Compared to the rest of her clan, this is a totally lame power. That is, until a national celebrity is kidnapped while filming a remake of Ferris Bueller's Day Off and the only witness to the crime is a bad-tempered pink Persian named Tiddlywinks (a.k.a. Rufus Brutus III). Assisted by a team of cheeky felines, Natalie and her friends race around Chicago, revisiting key sites from the movie, in attempt to foil the kidnapper's evil plot and rescue the victim from an uncertain fate. Maybe Natalie's power isn't so lame after all.

The Verdict
Cat Girl's Day Off is one of those truly fun stories you'll be really happy to have read.  This rollicking adventure has it all: Great characters, a fun plot, lots of humor, and enough quirkiness to keep things fresh and exciting throughout. A word of warning to those living with cats: This book will have you looking at your furry feline friends in a whole new light.

p.s. Move over, Grumpy Cat! Tiddlywinks/Rufus Brutus III totally has you beat on the feline attitude scale. --AJB

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