Miss Hazeltine's Home for Shy and Fearful Cats

New cat book! We love our kitty books, just like we love our kitties. Say hello to Jenny! Jenny is around 17 years old now. You can see Peanut the Mutt off to the side there. Jenny is not shy, nor is she fearful. The dog has never frightened her, although once in a while, Peanut gets a little too hyper. Jenny is good at doling out punishment: Whack!

This is a book about some very timid felines.

Miss Hazeltine's Home for Shy and Fearful Cats
by Alicia Potter, illustrated by Birgitta Sif.
Knopf Books for Young Readers, 2015.

I waited a long time for the library to finally get this book! The title alone made me want to read it. Plus, we loved Birgitta Sif's Frances Dean Who Loved to Dance and Dance. Seemed like a win-win!

The plot is simple. Miss Hazeltine opens a Home for Shy and Fearful Cats. She didn't know if anyone would come, but soon, lots and lots of cats arrive. "He runs from mice!" "She's scared of birds!" "Can't pounce!"

The most timid cat is Crumb, who runs inside and immediately hides. Miss Hazeltine works with all of the cats (they're even scared of the broom!), but she spends extra time with poor Crumb. She even confesses her fear of owls and mushrooms to him.

One evening, Miss Hazeltine realizes they're almost out of milk. She tells Crumb she is going to fetch some. She heads home with a bucketful, then trips and falls in a hole, twisting her ankle. Only Crumb knows where she has gone, so he rounds up the other cats, bringing the dreaded broom along for the trip.

Of course, the cats save their beloved Miss Hazeltine, proving that love conquers fear.

It's such a cute book. Alicia Potter's story is adorable, and coupled with Sif's illustrations, the book is definitely a keeper.

Would you like to see our other kitties? Mabel isn't shy or fearful. Mabel likes to randomly swat the other pets if she feels they are getting too much attention. She has caught a few mice in her day, too.

You can meet baby Mabel here and here. Here she is today:

If we have a shy and fearful cat, it would be Lucy, Mabel's sister. Lucy had three kittens out in our yard. They found a home with Little Sis's preschool bestie and her family. After her brother, Orange Boy, disappeared, Lucy moved in. She only likes Mr. B, and she hates Peanut the Mutt and being picked up. 

{She also loves this chair.}

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  1. Adorable book! I love Birgitta Sif's art, too. I'd like to buy this one sometime! We also have a shy and fearful cat, his name is Oliver. Very fretful, especially around strangers. Positively afraid of babies. :)

    1. Haha! We've only had to spring a dog on the cats lately, although Jenny was around when we brought Big Sis home. She and Katie, our late Siamese, took a long while getting used to the little people. Jenny is Big Sis's kitty now! She's getting so old, but she still wants to be with her girl. I don't want to think about how it will be when she passes.

      We had a third cat, Henry, when the girls were little. Henry was a very, very shy and fearful cat. He'd gotten better, but once babies entered the picture, he reverted to his old ways.

  2. this is sooooooooooooo darling. i really like the art! and the title! i really miss picturebooks, I need to go to the library and see what's out there that's fun. Julia still will cheerfully flip through them!

    1. I still love my picture books. They're as much for me as for the girls!


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