by James Howe (Author), Marie-Louise Gay (Illustrator)
Reading level: Ages 4-8
Hardcover: 40 pages
Review Contributor: Tanya of www.books4yourkids.com
Buddy books seem to be the staple genre of beginning readers. Along with Frogand Toad and George and Martha, Houndsley and Catina can be added to the list of stand-outs in their field. Above all else, these stand-out friends show kindness and consideration for each other, especially at times of conflict.
The three books in the series are written by James Howe, of Bunnicula series fame, and have detailed, cozy watercolor illustrations by Marie-Louise Gay, author and illustrator of the Stella and Sam books as well as the chapter book, Travels With My Family that match the gentle tone of Howe's writing. Houndsley is a dog with a soft-as-a-rose-petal voice who enjoys cooking, but learns that he neither wants or needs to be the best cook. Catina is a thoughtful, enthusiastic cat who thinks she wants to be a writer but learns that writing does not make her happy.
Each book has three chapters, as opposed to the Frog & Toad and George & Martha books which are separated into stories. For siblings of older independent readers, this might make all the difference. Some kids who see their older sibling reading a chapter book will accept nothing less. Hopefully, this will fit the bill and take up a some time during that difficult learning year or so between being an emerging reader and an independent reader.
The other books, Houndsley and Catina and the Birthday Surprise, available in paperback and Houndlsey and Catina and the Quiet Time, available in hardcover, are equally enchanting and make for good story time reading as well for the three and four year old crowd as well.
Books in the Bunnicula Series include:
- Bunnicula: A Rabbit-Tale of Mystery
- Howliday Inn
- The Celery Stalks at Midnight
- Return to Howliday Inn
- Bunnicula Strikes Again!
- Bunnicula Meets Edgar Allan Crow
Books in the George and Martha Series include:
- George and Martha
- George and Martha Encore
- George and Martha Rise and Shine
- George and Martha One Fine Day
- George and Martha Tons of Fun
- George and Martha Back in Town
- George and Martha Round and Round
- George and Martha: The Complete Stories of Two Best Friends Collector's Edition
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