S’more: The Campground Kitten

Bonny Gaffney, illustrated by Cecil Gocotano

Publisher: Xlibris Pages: 29 Price: (paperback) $21.99 ISBN: 9781543462678 Reviewed: March, 2018 Author Website: Visit »

A sweet, uncomplicated book about animal rescue and pet adoption, S’more: The Campground Kitten is based on a true story.

S’more is the runt of a five-kitten litter born near a campground one spring. She’s able to keep up with her bigger brothers and sisters until a rainstorm comes and she’s too small to overcome the physical obstacles that her family leaps over to reach higher ground. Hungry, sick, and alone, the kitten jumps into a trash bin—but becomes stuck. A camper discovers her, and two girls at the campground offer to adopt her. The kitten gets her name, visits the veterinarian, and fully recovers from her ordeal through the love and attention of her new family.

The book’s illustrations are mostly commonplace, but they are colorful, expressive and a fair complement to the story. The narrative itself, told in rhyme, is straightforward and and will inspire empathy in readers as they watch S’more face obstacles and overcome them through the kindness of others.

That said, the two little girls who adopt her to save the day, carry a sense of deus ex machina that never allows for any real tension to develop or for the story to become truly transformative or personal. While the text is mostly approachable, a few more sophisticated words (“terrain” and “monsoon”) may trip up very young readers.

It should also be noted that while, on the cover, S’more is depicted roasting a marshmallow, she doesn’t exhibit any anthropomorphic qualities in the book itself.

S’more: The Campground Kitten brings readers a simple, unembroidered story about a lost kitten who finds her forever home. It should appeal to young readers who love cats and other animals.

Also available in hardcover and ebook.

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