Ottoline and the Yellow Cat, by Chris Riddell is a book I gave to a second grader that normally didn’t enjoy reading independently. She and I started reading the book together and the next day she read and read until she finished the WHOLE book by herself. She was so proud of herself and the next week took it to school to show her teacher . She was very excited when some of her friends also read and enjoyed this book.
is a little fantasy, a little bit of an adventure, and a big mystery story that will draw in the the young reader moving into chapter books. The black and white illustrations with a touch of red are intriguing and filled with an incredible amount of details. The fantasy is wrapped around a little girl living alone is a big city with a very strange character, Mr. Munford,while her parents are traveling, all the eccentric things that are in her apartment, the strange people that come in daily to help take care of them. Finally, there is a bear that lives in the basement.The adventure is about the a young girl exploring the big city, being with her friend the bear, or just taking time to jump into the puddles. The mystery is very cleverly written about a string of high profile crimes in the area, and if that isn’t enough dogs are missing. Ottoline and Mr. Munford set out to solve the missing dog mystery and discover these two are connected. The plan they develop to catch the thieves is both clever and complicated. One of my favorite illustrations is the map of the apartment how it shows the plan to catch the thief. Their plan draws together all the information we have learned throughout the book. This is the part that the readers like to read over and over. Each time they reread this part, I always hear them say,”Oh my look what I missed!”Mystery stories is about finding clues and gathering information. I think this is the perfect book to help the young or reluctant reader practice these skills.