Reviews for Snot Stew

by Bill Wallace

Book list
From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.

Gr. 4-6. Yes, the title is awful, but many kids will undoubtedly love it. Happily, the rest of the book is so appealing that librarians should overlook the title and concentrate on the story's amusing antics. When Mama Cat tells her almost-grown kittens it's time they move out and make room for the new babies she is expecting, most head into the world. Kikki and Toby, however, are taken in by a farm family. A house is a whole new world for the felines. There's the couch, a good place to hide; breakable trinkets, which are to be avoided at all costs; but, best of all, they enjoy hugging and kissing from Ben, Sarah, and their parents. However, as the cats grow more comfortable, Toby becomes fatter, lazier, and more of a bully. He insists on appropriating Kikki's food in a manner that children have down pat ("It's mine." "Is not." "Is too." The cats think they are saying "snot stew"). Kikki gets tired of Toby, who turns his attention elsewhere. He has always taunted Butch, the dangerous dog, but now he's too fat to escape Butch's jaws; in a dramatic conclusion it's up to Kikki to save her arrogant brother. Short, snappy, filled with amusing drawings, and featuring an approachable design, this story, like others by Wallace, is sure to find fans among its intended audience. --Ilene Cooper

Publishers Weekly
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Two abandoned kittens encounter mishaps on all sides when they are adopted by a human family; PW praised the ``appealing and humorous'' story. Ages 9-12. (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Publishers Weekly
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If the title of the book doesn't appeal to adults, it's a surefire attention-grabber for children. Told from a cat's-eye view of the world, the story begins just before Toby and Kikki are deserted by their barnyard mother and adopted by a human family. At first the two kittens are terrified, but both are won over with warm beef stew and soon settle comfortably into life with their family. But the kittens' misunderstanding of human ways and somewhat limited grasp of their language eventually lands them in near-catastrophe. The pace of Wallace's story is as irreverent and light as his book's title, and the kittens' fur-flying adventures are appealing and humorous. McCue's black-and-white drawings are funny and fresh, perfect for the hijinks of the story. Ages 8-12. (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

School Library Journal
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Gr 3-5-- Two kittens adopted by two children must learn the ways of humans. They hear the children arguing over possessions (``Is not!. . .Is too!) and think they are playing a game called ``Snot Stew.'' When the kittens begin to play the game, however, they find that it can lead to hurt feelings, animosity, and danger. The story is narrated by the female kitten, and the descriptions of things from a cat's point of view are amusing at first and soon become simplistic and predictable. The story drags; its short, simple sentences create a feeling of stiffness. The most disturbing thing about the book is the contradictory nature of the kittens--they act very human on the one hand, but the plot is based on their misunderstandings of human nature. The story lacks believability. Those who have enjoyed such fine cat tales as Beverly Cleary's Socks (Morrow, 1973), Margaret Wise Brown's Sneakers (Addison-Wesley, 1979; o.p.), and Eleanor Clymer's Horatio (Macmillan, 1974) will not be satisfied with Snot Stew.--Susan Susan Scheps, Shaker Heights Public Library, Ohio (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.