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School Library Journal Review
K-Gr 2-Angela Throgmorton is perfectly happy living alone, until a very scruffy-looking kitten is left on her doorstep. She names her new "baby" Old Tom, and tries to bring him up to be polite and well behaved. Unfortunately, the cat quickly gets out of control-frightening guests, destroying furniture, and generally creating chaos. At last, she kicks him out of the house. At first, both are happy with their new freedom. Angela has a pristine house once more and Tom has many exciting places to explore. However, the outside world is cold and the roving feline is soon living in a trash can, hungry and alone. Angela, meanwhile, finds her orderly, empty house very lonely. When Old Tom is picked up by the animal pound, Angela sees his picture on the news and the two are happily reunited. Similar in theme to Jack Gantos's "Rotten Ralph" series (Farrar), this title lacks the appeal of those more child-focused stories. Old Tom's rowdy antics are amusing, but Angela is a stereotypical old woman, complete with beehive hairdo and obsessive tidiness. The sketchy black-and-white drawings of pop-eyed human and animal characters lack detail. Oddly skewed size relationships and crowded pages often make the action hard to follow. Transition readers may be attracted by the short text and graphic style, but there are better books on friendship and acceptance.-Elaine E. Knight, Lincoln Elementary Schools, IL (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.