Book Review: Katie the Catsitter: Best Friends for Never written by Colleen AF Venable, illustrated by Stephanie Yue
Calling all Raina Telgemeier fans! It’s back to school for Katie the Catsitter in this purr-fectly irresistible graphic novel series about friendship, heroes, and cats (lots of cats)!
Katie loves skating with the Wheelas and the fact that she’s officially a superhero sidekick. But now that school’s starting, everything’s changing. The Mousetress is getting blamed for things Katie knows she didn’t do. Sidekick training is NOT as exciting as she’d hoped. Katie’s best friend Beth is back in town and Beth’s new boyfriend is always hanging around (ugh!). Not to mention that all of Katie’s friends are mad at her. Fixing this will be harder than any skateboarding trick. But with the help of 217 slightly out of the ordinary cats, Katie’s going to try!
Can she clear the Mousestress’s name, uncover the real supervillain, and become the sidekick (and the friend) she’s always dreamed of being?
I loved book one in this series. My post-it note review of it was: I’m obsessed! 217 cats! Superheroes! Activism! A diverse cast of characters! I loved all the details in the art, especially with those busy cats. Full of whimsy, humor, justice, and CATS!
Then when I book-talked it at school, it got lots of interest, particularly when I said, “217 cats!” It never sits on the shelf longer than a class period and as my tweet above shows, despite me trying to hide the sequel while I read it, it was spied immediately and sweetly asked for. I want to be friends with Katie and get roped into all of her adventures. Here, Katie is wondering when she will ever get to go on a mission, or really start training as a sidekick to the Mousetress, or get to carry out a good PLAN (all caps, of course). Is being a sidekick really just about answering emails and waiting around while a hero binges a baking reality show? Yawn.
The rest of her life is keeping her busy, even if her superhero life isn’t currently the most interesting thing ever. The distance that was already growing with her best friend widens when she gets a boyfriend, making Katie feel left behind. Also, everyone is so obsessed with the Eastern Screech and Stainless Steel, while believing the Mousetress to be evil, which Katie knows she isn’t (since she’s her neighbor—and owner of those 217 cats—and Katie’s mentor). And she’s hanging out with some new skateboarding friends, which is creating further friction with best friend Beth. If only she could just wear some suction cup shoes and help clear the Mousetress’s name! Maybe then things could start to fall into place. But when they actually do, WOW! is Katie in for a surprise reveal.
This series is so fun and such a great mix of regular middle school drama and superhero/villain hijinks. This is one of those books I finish and want to say to, “Thank you for having me; I had such a good time!” If you somehow missed book one, go back and read that one, too! Hard to imagine liking a book more!
Review copy courtesy of the publisher
Publisher: Random House Children’s Books
Publication date: 02/15/2022
Series: Katie the Catsitter #2
Age Range: 8 – 12 Years
Filed under: Uncategorized
About Amanda MacGregor
Amanda MacGregor works in an elementary library, loves dogs, and can be found on Twitter @CiteSomething.
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