Three Little Pugs and the Big, Bad Cat – Becky Davies, illustrated by Caroline Attia, Tiger Tales, (9781680100433), 2017
Rating: 1- 5 (5 is excellent or a Starred review) 4
Genre: Picture Book
What did you like about the book? This is a silly twist on the classic Three Little Pigs story. Bubbles, Bandit and Beauty are three little pugs and the big baddie is a cat. The illustrations superimpose photos of the pugs into the bright cartoon-style digital images. Each pug builds a house to match it’s personality. Bubbles is hungry, so he stops to eat and build his hows with the closest thing around – straw. Bandit loves to play with sticks, so that is what he builds his house from. Beauty, their sister, takes charge and wearing shirt labelled “The Boss” oversees a crew of forest animals to build her house of bricks. The big bad cat, “Sharp, scratchy claws, a terrible twitching tail, and mean beady eyes,” is a fluffy white cat who changes costumes throughout. Dressed as a cowboy she blows the straw house down with a blowdryer and she dons a Rambo-style outfit to blow the stick house down with a leaf blower. As in the original, the baddie is stopped by the brick house but also by her owner calling her home: “‘Muffin!’ trilled a voice though the trees. ‘Oh, Muffin! Time for din-din!’” In the end, Muffin finds that she will be sharing her home with the pugs: “And the three little pugs and the Big, Bad Cat lived happily ever after… well, almost!” The end pages in the front are framed photos of the three pugs, while at the back they include the put-upon cat. Children will love this fun twisted fairy tale and it will make a great read aloud at story time.
Anything you didn’t like about it? No, although it might have been fun if photos were used for the cat as well as the pugs.
To whom would you recommend this book? This is a book for fans of retellings of classic tales, especially if they love dogs.
Who should buy this book? Public libraries and elementary school libraries
Where would you shelve it? Picture books
Should we (librarians/readers) put this at the top of our “to read” piles? No
Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City: Catherine Coyne, Mansfield Public Library, Mansfield, MA
Date of review: 1/28/17