Calling all cat lovers! Raj the Bookstore Tiger is a multifaceted book that will provide joy, entertainment, and many new connections to young readers and their classrooms. The story is a good one, in terms of both the idea and the execution of it. It is somewhat predictable, but that is not always a bad thing, and especially in this case. The story and its characters, combined with the warm tones of the illustrations, make for an interesting journey into many possibilities.
Classroom teachers will find great utility because Raj has the capacity to transport classrooms into many different units of study. Will students be intrigued with the poetry of William Blake? Or, maybe they are studying cats of all sorts? Perhaps they are beginning a study of India? Or book stores and libraries? Whatever the choice, Raj may be a great fit. Add it to the early childhood classroom and all libraries that serve that population.
Having just seen a portion of the Maximum India celebration at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, I am more appreciative of the watercolors selected for use in the book. They evoke India and they make me think of cats, but in a softer, less conspicuous way. Pelley’s words and Keiser’s brush strokes are an effective pairing that create a world that is inviting to kids to exercise their imaginations. Fortunately, I am still one of those kids.
Andrews High School
50 HS Drive
Andrews, NC 28901