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Some Catty Heroes

by Miriam Downey 30. June 2013 18:29


A couple of weeks ago, I introduced you to books in which dogs played a large role. I heard from a lot of cats who indicated that this wasn't fair,  and that there were a lot of books where cats were the heroes--heroes far more interesting than dogs.

I have to apologize to my kitty friends. Today is your day. Actually, cat books are a lot more fun than dog books. It may be because cats have such unique personalities. The following list includes books for all groups of readers--picture books, chapter books, and novels. I'll throw in a few cat training books too--if it is possible to train a cat. (Sorry Kitty!)

These books are all available at your library or local bookstore.

Picture Books

Millions of Cats by Wanda Gag. Which cat is the prettiest?

Hi Cat by Ezra Jack Keats. Archie is adopted by a stray cat.

The Cat in the Hat by Dr. Seuss. The most famous cat of all.

Chato's Kitchen by Gary Soto. You got to love Chato as he tries to invite a mouse for dinner.

Skippyjon Jones by Judy Schachner. A Siamese cat is convinced he is a Chihuahua named El Skippito. There are several books in the series.

Bad Kitty by Nick Bruel. This one is my all time favorite.

Rotten Ralph by Jack Gantos. Ralph is just a rotten cat in a delightful and humorous series.

Puss in Boots by Charles Perrault. Get the version by Hans fischer.

Chapter Books

Captain Cat by Syd Hoff. A cat becomes a soldier. An Easy Reader.

The Cat Who Went to Heaven by Elizabeth Coatsworth. A Japanese artist and his white cat. Newbery Prize winner.

Mr. Putter and Tabby series by Cynthia Rylant. This series is excellent for early readers.

Catwings by Ursula LeGuin. Four little kittens are born with wings. There are adventures in the several books that make up the series.

A Question of Trust by Marion Dane Bauer. A coming-of-age story featuring a boy and a stray cat.

The Incredible Journey by Sheila Burnford. A classic story about three loyal animals' incredible journey home.

Holiday Inn and Return to Howliday Inn by James Howe. A trio of animals and their adventures at a boarding kennel. Very funny.


Time Cat: The Remarkable Journeys of Jason and Gareth by Lloyd Alexander. Gareth is a cat that can go through time, and he takes his owner Jason with him.

Skipping School by Jessie Hass. Philip saves two kittens and hides them in an abandoned house.

The Cat Who...a series of mysteries by Lillian Jackson Braun.

Captain Kidd's Cat by Robert Lawson. The story of Captain Kidd through the eyes of his pet cat.

The Joe Grey PI mysteries by Shirley Rousseau Murphy. The books in the series include Cat Seeing Double and Cat on the Edge.

Fact Books about Cats and Kittens

My New Kitten by Joanna Cole. Follows the growth of a litter of kittens.

Meet My Cats by Lesley Anne Ivory. A discussion of the different types of cats.

The Kitten Book by Camilla Jessel. Taking care of cats.

I Could Pee on This: And Other Poems by Cats. The quirkiness of cats in poetry.

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Reading Apps and Free Online Books for Beginning Readers

by Miriam Downey 17. June 2013 07:35

Here's something to try. There are several new reading apps out for the summer that you might want to try with your new readers. Beginning readers lose the most over the summer months, At the same time, children don't want to be tied down to the regular grind of school work. A book to read on the computer or a mobile device may help them retain what they have already learned and not cause them to lose the knowledge they gained over the regular school term.

An app for your computer, phone, or tablet may be just the ticket for your child. The following list is not exhaustive by any means, but just offers a suggestion for you to look at. A disclaimer: I have looked at all of these apps, but have not downloaded any of them to my computer or mobile devices. Give them a try and let us know how they work. Some of them are free: some have fees. Most apps have free trials, so I would certainly try out the free trial.

Apps for Mobile Devices

Penguin Leveled Readers. This is a free app for IPad or IPhone. Several levels of readers are available with nice stories. This app comes highly recommended.

Booksy: Learn to Read Platform for K-2. A free app for IPad. Mostly science and animal topics. Leveled.

LAZ Readers are an app for ITunes for your Mac or PC. This is an extensive library of books by Language Technologies. It has a cost but they offer a free trial and free samples.

Big Universe Learning has many books that are online or available for apps. This site has a fee, but they have a free trial.

Free Books Available Online

Starfall is a very nice phonics reading system. Lots of good stories.

We Give Books has a very good selection of free books. You need to register, but then the books are free. The advantage of this site is that many of the books are by famous children's authors.

The International Children's Digital Library is a great source for online books. The advantage of this site is that many of the books are bilingual.


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