ISBN 978-0-06-230662-3 $17.99
Reviewed from galleys R 4-8 yrs
Like any self-respecting house cat, Princess Kitty knows that her human caretakers—sorry, her attendants—worship her and live to lavish her with attention (even if the baby needs a few lessons on proper petting technique). That’s why she’s a bit put out when the guests at what she considers her surprise party seem more interested in the little girl who’s turning six than in the magnificent royal feline in their midst and don’t invite her to join in with the activities. Okstad’s candy-colored illustrations tell the story of a child’s birthday party, but Princess Kitty’s interpretation of events offers an ironic counterpoint that will have readaloud audiences giggling as they follow along. Invitingly expressive faces on humans and animals alike provide the irony, whether Princess Kitty is describing her ballet lessons while one flustered attendant scrambles behind her to catch a vase before it falls off the shelf, or exclaiming [End Page 28] in delight over her favorite board game while a group of children throws up their hands in exasperation. Cat lovers will recognize Princess Kitty’s sense of royal entitlement and find her charms irresistible, and at least a few will argue it’s high time their kitties get birthday parties of their own.