Rescue Cat

Roaring Brook. Jul. 2024. 32p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9781626721548.
PreS-Gr 2–In what is sure to be a favorite juxtaposition of text and art this season, Savage’s new book opens on a lazy orange cat, blissed out on a pillow, surrounded by cat toys and a ball of blue yarn, with a big screen TV behind her. Then the tough-guy intro: “Life wasn’t always this easy for Butterscotch.” Readers see the moment a small child, porcelain skin and black hair, dangles a feathered cat toy from a window and “rescues” Butterscotch from the streets where she’d been feeling lost. Taking her role as a rescue cat seriously, Butterscotch leaps into the TV screen at the first sign of danger to others, say, a lion cub wandering too close to water and to crocodiles. The digital art, which at this point had been soft-edged and fuzzy in feeling, takes on the hard lines of a coloring book as Butterscotch roars at the croc, and the croc roars back. The small child with the black hair leans into this other-side-of-the-screen world, guiding Butterscotch and the cub to safety, pointing out the value of the “off” button on the TV remote. This is such a concise picture book, crisp in the telling and execution, with one idea to lure readers in, like the feathered cat toy that lures in Butterscotch.
VERDICT Savage is so reliable; add this to the shelves where worn copies of Polar Bear Night and Supertruck live.

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