From the funniest voice in young fiction today, Squishy McFluff: The Invisible Cat! by Pip Jones is the first in an irresistible series for young readers about imaginary friends in hilarious rhyming text and with adorable illustrations by Ella Okstad.
Pip Jones is a freelance journalist. Squishy McFluff won the inaugural Greenhouse Funny Prize in 2012 and Pip is delighted to bring him to the page at Faber. Pip lives in London with her husband, two daughters and a real imaginary cat.
"How much mischief can an invisible cat cause? Plenty, if that cat
is Squishy McFluff. While playing in the garden one day, a little
white girl named Ava spies (or rather does not spy) something
invisible. "This marvelous creature was fluffy and tiny, / As cute
as a button, with eyes big and shiny, / A tail that swished
proudly, first this way, then that. / A fabulous, friendly,
invisible cat!" Ava and her new friend chase a pigeon (which gets
away). Then she takes him in to meet her mum and introduces him as
Squishy McFluff. Mum plays along, feeding Squishy some invisible
fish, and all goes well...for a while. There's marker on the
curtains, paint on the carpet, and sweaters unraveled--all
Squishy's fault. Mum has lost patience with Squishy, but she finds
it hard to send an invisible cat away. Happily, Great Grandad Bill
visits to sweetly lay down the law. British rhymester Jones'
American debut riffs on the well-worn "imaginary friend/pet done
it" theme in this early chapter book, the first in a series, but
she does it all in rhyming couplets accompanied by Okstad's peppy,
pastel-colored pictures. In Book 2, Supermarket Sweep! (publishing
simultaneously), Squishy creates mayhem in the market. Little
Americans might need a translation or two, but Ava and Squishy will
charm them nonetheless. Readers will wish that they had a kitty to
blame their misdeeds on when they've acted...naughty." --Kirkus
"Though Ava is the only one who can see Squishy McFluff's whiskers and silvery white fur, her parents welcome their daughter's invisible kitten into their house. The two are inseparable, and as Squishy only eats invisible treats, he's no trouble at all to have around--that is, until he starts causing mischief. Ava quickly passes the blame for the marker on the curtains, the overturned glass, and the pigeon in the bathroom to her invisible companion. It takes a tactful visit from Great-Granddad Bill for the little girl to understand that poor behavior has consequences, even in pets. When Squishy's supply of invisible fish is threatened as comeuppance, Ava vows to teach him to be good. While she never owns up to her misdeeds, Ava's genuine concern for Squishy reveals that the behavior lesson has been taken to heart. This playful early chapter book will attract emergent readers with its rhyming text, widely spaced lines, and sweet red-and-blue illustrations. Look for book two in this funny British series, Squishy McFluff: Supermarket Sweep!, published simultaneously."
"In a punchy rhyming escapade, debut author Jones introduces an inventive girl named Ava and her invisible cat, Squishy McFluff. When household mishaps coincide with Squishy's arrival, it's time for him to go--until Ava's clever Great Grandad Bill intervenes. Jones's singsong verse is long-winded at times ("He's ever so small, / he just doesn't know better./ He felt very bad/ for unraveling that sweater, / And you must understand/ that kittens are frisky, / He didn't deliberately/ spill Daddy's whisky"), though it gives the story the feel of an epic poem. Norwegian artist Okstad's pink and teal graphics nicely highlight the mischievous goings-on." Available simultaneously: Supermarket Sweep! Ages 5-7.