I know I keep blogging the same picture, but this is the first advance copy of Cat in the City, the one that will be in the stores in a few weeks, followed by two new really good reviews… I am so thankful for my author and my friend, Julie and the excellent team at Dial Books.
But without Julie’s brilliant story, there would be no pictures. How very lucky for me the day that she agreed to write this story. It’s been a joy filled collaboration. www.juliesalamon.com/about/
Publishers Weekly said my illustrations were “little love letters to the Big Apple that also capture the bohemian bonhomie of Pretty Boy’s circle.” It’s the truth—I love New York!
Issue: July 1, 2014
Cat in the City.
Salamon, Julie (Author) , Weber, Jill (Illustrator)
Sep 2014. 208 p. Dial, hardcover, $16.99. (9780803740563).
He is just a stray white cat until he wanders into a dog park, follows a dog walker, and lands in a New York City knickknack shop. Fed by the owner and adored by the next-door hairdresser, the newly dubbed
Pretty Boy finds himself sitting pretty indeed. Human friends, canine friends—what else does a cat need? Salamon’s breezy but sophisticated chapter book has New York down cold—street musicians, subway rats, ridiculous rents, and all. The animal characters witness everything from a pet’s-eye (or kid’s-eye, really) point of view, not comprehending everything but gleaning enough about the grown-up worries. Each of Pretty Boy’s episodes, from surviving a hurricane to getting stuck in a car bound for Maine, is underplayed with a subtle, dry style that should make this a hit with adults as much as kids. Weber’s glossy, full-color spot illustrations have plenty of Greenwich Village quirk and find a charming balance with an animal-centered story line that is both naturalistic and believable. A sweet love letter to New York, cats, and what it means to be “home.”— Daniel Kraus
School Library Journal
Gr 4–6—A stray cat—later named Pretty Boy—is living on the streets of New York City when he is befriended by Roxie, Maggie, and Henry, a canine trio that often frequents Washington Square. Through his newfound friendship, Pretty Boy is taken in by Dee, the salon stylist who lives next door to Roxie’s owner, and meets Eli, a lonely boy with a love of music, whose family has recently moved to the city. Just as Pretty Boy begins settling down, Dee decides to move and must leave him behind. Salamon interweaves the lives of several characters together, all of whom impact Pretty Boy as he learns to value friendship and family. With the theme of belonging at the forefront of the novel—from Pretty Boy’s search for a home to Eli’s struggle to adjust to urban life—the author successfully offers a story for young readers trying to discover their place in the world and their niche in life, and the flux and uncertainty that often goes with it. Weber’s full-color illustrations brighten the pages, further adding to the charm of the book,and the ending, in which Pretty Boy finally finds a permanent, happy home, is satisfying. Bittersweet and meaningful, Cat in the City shows the solemnity and inevitability of change and the importance of finding a family and a home to call your own.—Laura J. Giunta, Garden City Public Library, NY