Recommended for ages 8-12
A spin-off of the popular Stick Dog series, Stick Cat introduces us to… well, Stick Cat, who lives in an apartment with his human friend, Goose, and hangs out during the day with Edith, the cat next door. The two love to play games and listen to Mr. Music tune pianos at the factory next door, but one day, Mr. Music has an accident! His arms are trapped in the piano when the top of the instrument crashes down, and Stick Cat has to figure out a way to save him.
Introduced by the same middle grade narrator that draws Stick Dog, we learn Stick Cat’s origin: he wants to impress a classmate who suggests that he draw a Stick Cat. We launch into Stick Cat’s adventure, which will grab Wimpy Kid, Dork Diaries, and Big Nate fans right away. It’s a similar format, with line drawings accompanying text, and filled with humor. Stick Cat and Edith banter back and forth during their daily playdate; Edith is a little dense and self-centered, and Stick Cat plays off of that while trying to spare Edith’s feelings and accomplish his rescue mission.
Readers can visit the Stick Dog/Stick Cat website for videos, downloadables, quizzes, and the author’s blog. A Tail of Two Kitties is the first Stick Cat book, with two more in the planning stages. There are currently four Stick Dog books.
Both series are a fun addition to middle grade collections and will likely appeal to reluctant and struggling readers – I know my Big Nate and Wimpy Kid books are always off the shelves, so this may help stem the tide a bit this summer!