for Cat Up a Tree by Anne Isaacs
Does the cat need catching? The fireman and cat-catcher think so. To the consternation of her father, a little girl wants to take the cat home as a pet. In the sky, a balloon lady drifts by to sing praises to a like-minded free spirit; a wary robin sets up an alarm; the mayor tries to organize everyone. And then there's the box-car racer, who couldn't care a whit about the cat and only wishes that the crowd around the tree would get out of his way! But of course it's the cat who -- knowing very well why he's up there -- has the last word.
Anne Isaacs, author of the Caldecott Honor book Swamp Angel and the highly praised Treehouse Tales, again freshly, brilliantly conceives the read-aloud experience. Effortlessly changing mood and voice, evoking everyday wishes and secret longings, the poems here cast a rich storytelling spell by virtue of their insight, versatility, and dexterity. Stephen Mackey's lush, color-drenched paintings, tinged with humor, wit, and romance, beautifully partner the text. Achieving a charmed balance between the familiar and the fanciful, they create a pliant, responsive world overwhich these remarkable verses may preside.