Julie Sykes’ The Pet Sitter series offers a pleasant transition from the world of mundane chores. Readers who are searching for their first career moves will do well to consider the adventure filled world of pet sitting. The mishaps, difficulties and responsibilities encountered with routine pet sitting duties make for more than interesting reading. Whether caring for a witch’s cat or an inventor’s dormouse, the books should offer a fun-filled experience for most readers in second through fourth grades.
Nathan Reed’s illustrations help the reader develop a sense of the story, but they also enlarge the characters and their escapades. There is no doubt in the reader’s mind that they are dealing with fictional characters, but these characters exhibit many of the same joys and frustrations that accompany childhood. The consistency of the illustrations across the series also breeds familiarity with the main character, Max, and the styles of animation that children are accustomed to viewing on television. The cover art reinforces those media connections and that makes the series have great shelf appeal.
The playful series would be a good candidate for classroom and elementary libraries. Communities that are hypersensitive to witches, wizards, and spells might want to avoid Tiger Taming. On the other hand, books that kindle the imagination are always dangerous and this series delivers.
4 out of 5
Andrews High School
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Andrews, NC 28901