Tuesday, April 14, 2015
Won Ton and Chopstick: a cat and dog tale told in haiku by Lee Wardlaw
Won Ton and Chopstick: a cat and dog tale told in haiku by Lee Wardlaw. Illustrated by Eugene Yelchin. 32 p. Henry Holt and Company (BYR), March, 2015. 9780805099874. (Purchased)
Won Ton is a happy cat now that his Boy is well-trained - nap, play, eat - it's all good. Until... What are these strange toys doing here? And, why is that door closed?
A puppy! Doom, according to Won Ton, who goes into full-Ninja mode only to be unceremoniously dumped outside, in a hilarious redux of one of my favorites from Won Ton: a cat tale told in haiku (2011). Oh, woe is Won Ton! He listens in on the conversation about what to name the puppy. He has the perfect name but no one's asking. He needs to enforce some rules, especially regarding his food bowl. This earns him a night outside where he misses his Boy and later, wonders if he will be forgotten.
Hilarious hijinks ensue involving toilet paper, garden beds and skunks among other familiar animal mishaps. Slowly, the two pets bond, leading to a conclusion that will leave readers sighing contentedly. This story could easily be read to a child coping with a new sibling as Won Ton's anger and confusion are pretty relatable. But share this one widely and add it to your haiku unit if you're a teacher. (ETA: here's a link to an extensive teacher's guide as well as a link to an activity guide!) Definitely one for any library collection.
It sure was fun to revisit with my favorite feline rescue.
I totally fell in love with Won Ton and eagerly awaited the release of its sequel once I learned it was coming. Endearing illustrations and plenty of humor make for a cozy read aloud.