Perfect Picture Book Friday – The Summer Nick Taught His Cats To Read

Look at this, dearies!

Summer has arrived!  I know this because the mountain laurel is out.


So it’s time for a Perfect Picture Book hiatus.

I always feel a little sad to put PPBF on hold for the summer 😦  But summer is a busy time for all of us – hard to keep up with reading and writing blog posts – and I always have grand ambitions of getting lots of other stuff done…

Just because I haven’t managed before doesn’t mean it can’t happen this year! 🙂

We will still be here for Would You Read It Wednesdays, Oh Susanna on the first Monday of the month and Short & Sweets on the third Monday of the month, and there are going to be a couple of VERY exciting blog tours coming up (starring your friends and mine, LION, ELEPHANT, and TRUCKS) as my three new books step out into the world.

So don’t worry!

There will still be plenty of fun (and chocolate!) around here! 🙂

And as we head into summer, I have the perfect Perfect Picture Book to share with you!

Nick Cats

Title: The Summer Nick Taught His Cats To Read

Written By: Curtis Manley

Illustrated By: Kate Berube

A Paula Wiseman Book (Simon & Schuster), July 2016, fiction

Suitable For Ages: 4-8

Themes/Topics:  reading, perseverance, creativity, imagination

Opening: “Nick had two cats, Verne and Stevenson.
They spent summers doing everything together.
But when Nick sat down with a book, the cats had their own ideas.

Screen Shot 2017-06-15 at 6.47.29 PM

text copyright Curtis Manley 2016, illustration copyright Kate Berube 2016

Brief Synopsis: Nick loves to read.  His cats do not.  Every time Nick opens a book, Verne sprawls across the pages and Stevenson sits on a stack of books scowling and cleaning his paw.  So naturally, Nick decides to share his love of reading with them by teaching them how.  Verne is amenable and learns quickly.  Stevenson shows all the behaviors of a reluctant reader…until Nick finds just the right way to pique his interest.

Links To Resources: read as many books as you can this summer!  Keep a list to show your progress!  Put a star or a sticker beside your favorite titles.  Swap one of your favorite books with one of a friend’s favorites and see if you like the same kind of books or if your friend’s tastes introduce you to something new!  Make your own book club.  Give it a name!  Choose a time and a place and a snack for meetings 🙂  Talk about the books your read with your friends.  Enjoy reading!

Screen Shot 2017-06-15 at 6.48.15 PM

text copyright Curtis Manley 2016, illustration copyright Kate Berube 2016

Why I Like This Book: Curtis is a likable boy with a genuine and infectious love of reading as well as obvious love for his two cats.  I love the silliness of the concept of teaching cats to read…and the fact that they learn 🙂  Verne is an easy-going amenable type who learns quickly and embraces reading as Nick does.  Stevenson, however, is a challenge – one that any reluctant reader will identify with.  But it turns out that Stevenson is an artist!  Nick turns Stevenson’s art into a story about Stevenson…and suddenly reading seems a little more interesting… 🙂  The story is imaginative and fun.  The art is cozy and warm.  This is a delightful book that budding readers, writers, artists…and cat lovers :)…will love.

I hope you enjoy it as much as I do 🙂

For the complete list of books with resources, please visit Perfect Picture Books.

PPBF folks, please add your titles and post-specific links (and any other info you feel like filling out 🙂 ) to the form below so we can all come see what fabulous picture books you’ve chosen to share this week!

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!!! 🙂

See you on Monday for Short & Sweets (assuming, of course, that I can think up something fun for you…! 🙂 )

Oh!  And Happy Father’s Day to all the dads out there!!! 🙂


15 thoughts on “Perfect Picture Book Friday – The Summer Nick Taught His Cats To Read

  1. Maria Marshall (@MariaMarshall_) says:

    Susanna, we will miss #PPBF, but we understand (if we have to). 🙂 Good luck on your book launches. I can’t wait to follow your blog tour. The Summer Nick Taught His Cats to Read is a fun book and was my first introduction to Curtis Manley. He is such a talented and funny writer (and person). I especially love the names he chose for ethe cats Verne and Stevenson. What a great book to start off a summerr of reading.

  2. ptnozell says:

    Susanna, What a wonderful book to start a summer of reading! I’ll miss #PPBF, but will be watching for the book launches & blog tours. And of course stopping by for #WYRIW & your other posts. Enjoy your summer!

  3. Diane Tulloch says:

    Love the book you have chosen for PPBF, the cover is adorable. I’m sad PBBF is closing for your summer, but I’ll wrap up warm and review heaps of books for when PBBF returns in September. I’m heading off in about 6 weeks to warmer lands far away so I will be enjoying an early summer anyway. Yep I can’t hold back the travel bug any longer. Bye…

  4. ThisKidReviewsBooks says:

    Okay. That book is freaking awesome! I NEED to get my hands on it – it sounds hilarious and touching at the same time! 🙂
    I’m sorry to hear PPBF is going on a hiatus, but I’m glad to hear that you will still be on the blog! 🙂 Let me know if you need a reviewer for your blog tour(s)!

  5. viviankirkfield says:

    Love the book, Susanna! Thank you for providing the picture book platform for us all…enjoy your summer hiatus…although with all of your book launch busyness and your other planned posts, I’m not sure how much rest you will get.
    I’m excited to feature you and your three wonderful new books later this summer on my blog.
    And for all of the Perfect Picture Book Friday bloggers, you are welcome to leave the link to your posts in the comment section of my PPBF offering during the summer – I have a full schedule through December and will be blogging every week.

  6. Patricia Tilton says:

    What a charming and funny book. You’re right, it is a perfect summer read!

    Congratulations on your upcoming book releases! How exciting. Would also love to review them, even if it’s not for PPBF! Wish you the best and have fun promoting!

    I will continue to review PBs all summer. It allows me the time to review special books that have already been featured here. See you in September!

  7. Cathy Ballou Mealey says:

    Perfect book choice to kick of summer reading season – CURTIS is a hoot! Just purchased my 14 yr old’s required summer reading book (A Tale of Two Cities) plus a slew of PBs for me. I think I have the better end of the bargain by far. No disrespect to Dickens, but I’ve become accustomed to – nay, spoiled by – gorgeous PB illustrations. Happy Summer everyone!

  8. heavenlyhashformoms says:

    Oh! I was so excited to see this book as choice this week!! I was introduced to it at an scbwi workshop from its editor a couple of years ago! If I remember right, she was a new editor and talked about having to fight for this book with her team, and then showed us the revision process it went through on its road to publication!! I remember thinking about how it is such an awesome concept for a book!! From a reading teacher’s perspective, it shows strategies for teaching reading, even for those readers who struggle with reading!! I was wondering if the author was a teacher? Really cool book!! Can’t wait for tomorrow’s short and sweet!

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