REVIEW: Old’s Possum’s Book of Practical Cats by T.S. Eliot

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars, Genre: Poetry, Pages: 80, Reading Level: Intermediate

Book Description:

“T. S. Eliot’s playful cat poems have delighted readers and cat lovers around the world ever since they were first published in 1939. They were originally composed for his godchildren, with Eliot posing as Old Possum himself, and later inspired the legendary musical Cats. Now with vibrant illustrations by the award-winning Axel Scheffler, this captivating edition makes a wonderful new home for Mr. Mistoffelees, Growltiger, the Rum Tum Tugger, Macavity the mystery cat, and many other memorable strays. It’s the perfect complement to the beloved previous edition, which remains available.”

I read Mem Fox’s Reading Magic and she mentioned a little boy who recognized these poems and thought I would check them out. I had seen the musical Cats, but never read the original poems on which the musical was based. In addition, I decided to read them to my toddler as well.

He loved them. He asked me to repeat some of the poems over and over again. And after overhearing us, my 9 year old would occasionally ask me if we could read ‘that cats book.’

Now some of the vocabulary would probably have to be explained to a 4 and 9 year old, but what’s funny is that neither of them asked me what a particular word meant. They were too mesmerized to do so. That’s some good poetry.

Anyway, Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats is a fun read aloud and I definitely recommend it.

Reviewed by Christina
September 7, 2013

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