Fostering curiosity in kids (and their parents) since 2011

The book that has my 12-year-old bubbling over with joy this week

Yesterday, with one week to go before school resumes in earnest, The Twelve-Year-Old and I finally made our annual School’s Out for the Summer trip to the local bookstore.

(Yes, I am aware. However, the librarians at my daughter’s middle school cleaned out their inventory last spring and let the kids take the discarded books home for free. So of course, my daughter came home on the last day of school with two enormous bags full of books. I just didn’t see the need to buy more until she’d read those. It took her a while.)

Reading broke out on our way home from the store, so instead of tuning in to NPR’s dreary summation of the day’s events, I listened to bubbles of laughter coming from the back seat. It’s been a while since I’ve had the pleasure to hear so much infectious joy, so I thought I’d tell you about the book that triggered it.

Klawde: Evil Alien Warlord Cat #1 by Johnny Marciano and Emily Chenoweth

What the book’s about: With his sharp claws and maniacal pursuit of power, Klawde has proven too ruthless a leader, even for the warlord cats on his home planet, Lyttyrboks. Klawde’s fellow cats strip him of his power and impose the cruelest punishment they know — exile to Earth.

Raj had an amazing life in Brooklyn — friends, pizza, all the comics he could read — all within easy walking distance of his apartment. But when his family moves to Elba, Oregon, Raj is forced to say goodbye to his friends, shelve his comic books, and go to nature camp. This is not a happy moment for Raj.

But it does make Raj a perfect foil for the tyrannical Klawde.

Why The Twelve-Year-Old Likes It: “The drawings are funny, the storylines are hilarious, and I liked the concept of Earth cats being descendants of ruthless exiles from another planet. Oh, and all of the cat place names are puns. For example, the capital planet is named Lyttyrboks. Lit-TER-box, get it, Mommyo?”

There is apparently a second book in the series, so I have agreed to acquire it for The Twelve-Year-Old on the condition that she doesn’t read it aloud to Canelo. That cat is feral enough already.

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