My selection today for Day 13 of Christie Wild’s PB 14:14 is another classic picture book…just can’t help myself!
This one is from 1928… Wanda Gag won the 1929 Newbery Honor Book Award. Ms. Gag pioneered the double page spread in this book, using both pages to move the story forward, putting them together with art that swept across the entire page spread.
Millions of Cats is the oldest American picture book still in print!
And if you are looking for a picture book that showcases patterns, you can stop right here!
Title: Millions of Cats
Author and Illustrator: Wanda Gag
Publisher: Coward McCann (recent editions are Penguin)
Top Ten Element: Patterns
“Once upon a time there was a very old man and a very old woman. They lived in a nice clean house which had flowers all around it, except where the door was. But they couldn’t be happy because they were so very lonely.”
Synopsis: A lonely old couple want a pretty little cat to keep them company. When the husband finds a hillside FILLED with cats, he has trouble picking the prettiest…and all of the cats follow him home.
“Cats here, cats there, cats and kittens everywhere. Hundreds of cats, thousands of cats, millions and billions and trillions of cats.”
This refrain is repeated – so we have patterns in words…but we also have patterns in the pictures – this author/illustrator definitely knew what she was doing.
When the man and his wife leave it up to the cats to determine who is the prettiest, mayhem breaks out and the couple run into their house! Will the cats be able to choose who is the prettiest? Will the old couple get the cat they want?
To tell you the truth, Ms. Gag’s story line would be quite at home with recent books like Creepy Carrots and Battle Bunny. When the cats start tearing each other apart, I want to quickly turn the page…I’m thinking too much violence for young kids…but obviously the publisher in 1939 loved it…and I think the publishers today would also.
If you’d like to see the review and craft activity I posted two years ago: