Saturday, May 6, 2017

Miss Hazeltine's home for shy and fearful cats by Alicia Potter illustrated by Birgitta Sif

"Then there was Crumb, the most timid of all. 
He dashed through the door ... and hid."

Miss Hazeltine opens a home for cats.  Shy cats and fearful cats arrive with their owners and alone. Gently she cares for each one. Teaching new skills such as climbing, pouncing and making new friends.  She also offers reassurance explaining to little Crumb that she too has her fears - of mushrooms. owls and the dark.  One day Miss Hazeltine leaves to collect a bucket of milk.  When she fails to return it is little Crumb who overcomes his fears and organises everyone into a search and rescue mission.

I am not really a cat person but the illustrations and warm resolution of this story made me smile. Birgitta Sitf is an illustrator from Iceland.  Watch this little video where she explains her creative process.  I love the name of her little daughter Soley which means Buttercup in Icelandic.

Look for another book by Birgitta Sif in our library called Oliver which was short listed for the prestigious Kate Greenway Medal.   We also have a fabulous book in the biography section of our library by Alicia Potter called Miss Harkness and the Panda.  Here is a set of teaching notes for Miss Hazeltine's Home for Shy and Fearful cats.

I would follow reading this book with The Adventures of Miss Petitfour.

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