________________ CM . . . . Volume VIII Number 20 . . . . June 6, 2002

cover A Cat Adrift. (Teelo's Adventures).

Maria Coffey. Illustrated by Eugenie Fernandes.
Toronto, ON: Annick Press, 2002.
32 pp., pbk. & cl., $6.95 (pbk.), $18.95 (cl.).
ISBN 1-55037-726-4 (pbk.), ISBN 1-55037-727-2 (cl.).

Kindergarten-grade 2 / Ages 5-7.

Review by Catherine Hoyt.

*** /4

excerpt: image

Cloud Island grew smaller and smaller, until finally it disappeared. The sun sank below the horizon, turning the sea to gold. Teelo was lost in a wilderness of water where unfamiliar creatures lived. Furry, bright-eyed otters swam on their backs, cradling their babies. Puffins with bulbous orange beaks whirred past like windup toys. And gigantic gray whales cruised by, their breath spouting high into the air.

Teelo the cat is at it again in his newest tale of adventure. Teelo was happy living on Cloud Island with Victor the Vet and all his animal friends. Then a misadventure results in Teelo's clinging to a drifting log to escape the sea. Teelo survives the night storm despite the lashing rain and whitecapped waves. The next day, Lily and her grandfather save Teelo from the sea, and he finds a new home aboard their wooden sailboat. Teelo spends the summer days playing with Lily and eating fresh caught fish. Weeks later, as the sailboat passes Cloud Island, Teelo falls into the water while trying to get a better look. Luckily Victor rescues Teelo in his kayak, and all of Teelo's animal friends welcome him back to the island. Seeing the bond between Teelo and Lily, Victor agrees to let Teelo live with Lily as long as they visit Cloud Island often. Teelo and all his island friends enjoy visiting and sailing with Lily and her grandfather.

     Coffey's descriptive language may introduce new words to young readers; bulbous, whirred and ukulele may be among the unfamiliar. Teelo fans and cat enthusiasts are sure to enjoy this new addition to the series. Talented illustrator Eugenie Fernandes' watercolour illustrations will be very familiar to readers as she has illustrated over 80 books. This story is captured with pages of colourful detail. The facial expressions of the animals allow the reader to view them as real characters in the story. This charming story, coupled with these vivid illustrations, allows the reader to escape on this sea adventure with Teelo.

     A Cat Adrift would make a nice addition to cat, sailing/sea or friends themed story programs. Public libraries who have other Teelo stories will want to add this to their collections.


As the result of an exciting move Catherine Hoyt is now the Reference Librarian at the Nunavut Legislative Library in Iqaluit, Nunavut. However, she enjoys volunteering at the local public library in the newest capital in Canada.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

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Published by
The Manitoba Library Association
ISSN 1201-9364