Mr. Wuffles! by David Wiesner


December has been designated Read a New Book Month. Often in December, we hunt for something recently published that will make the perfect gift. Now, I admit that I favor dog books. And my readers have been patient with me as I rhapsodize over titles like Love that Dog or Homer, month after month. But […]

Animals, Cats, Humor, Imagination, Technology
Featured on December 2

One-Eyed Cat by Paula Fox

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Today marks the birthday of writer Paula Fox, born in New York City. Her memoir Borrowed Finery tells the haunting story of her childhood and her rejection by her mother who left her in an orphanage. Paula was initially raised by Reverend Elwood Corning and his bedridden mother; later Fox’s Cuban grandmother took care of […]

Animals, Award Winning, Cats, Family, Great Depression, History, Newbery
Featured on April 22

The Fire Cat by Esther Averill

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October happens to be Fire Pup Month. But even old dogs can learn new tricks—and today I will be writing about a cat, not a dog! This year I’ve been meeting with a group of children’s book experts and enthusiasts to choose a small library of the best children’s books. Through this project I have […]

Animals, Cars, Cats, Transportation
Featured on October 1

Bad Kitty Gets a Bath by Nick Bruel


September has been designated Happy Cat Month. But the cat featured in our book of the day isn’t really happy. In fact, her owners have found a way to make her extremely miserable—by giving Bad Kitty a bath. I believe, however, that Nick Bruel, Bad Kitty’s creator, must certainly be laughing as he works on […]

Animals, Cats, Humor
Featured on September 17

Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats by T. S. Eliot
Illustrated by Edward Gorey


In the 1930s, an author who called himself “Old Possum” sent his godchildren (Tom Faber, Alison Tandy, Susan Wolcott, and Susanne Morley) a series of poems about cats. Playful, irreverent, and brilliantly written, these fourteen poems (a fifteenth “Cat Morgan Introduces Himself” appeared in 1952) were published in England by Faber and Faber in September […]

Animals, Cats, Humor, Imagination
Featured on June 28

The Cat in the Hat by Dr. Seuss


For many years, 2 Park Street in Boston served as the headquarters for Houghton Mifflin Publishers. In this Beacon Hill landmark, overlooking the Old Granary Burial Ground, a rickety brass elevator cage took employees up and down to their appointed floors, shuddering and whining as it did. This Otis elevator required the care of an […]

Animals, Cats, Humor, Imagination
Featured on June 18

Jenny and the Cat Club by Esther Averill


Today I am thanking all my cat-loving readers, who have had to suffer through endless dog books and dog stories. It isn’t fair, I know! However, June has been designated Adopt a Shelter Cat Month—with the motto “Make Pet Adoption Your First Option.” So to settle the imbalance in the Almanac, I’m going to use […]

Animals, Cats, New York
Featured on June 3

The Incredible Journey by Sheila Burnford


In April, we celebrate Pets Are Wonderful Month. For all pet owners the concept is self-explanatory. My furred wonder Lance takes a morning snooze near my desk as I write and generally participate in every activity of my life. Fifty years ago, in 1961, a book appeared that celebrates the bond between humans and their […]

Animals, Cats, Dogs
Featured on April 25

How to Talk to Your Cat by Jean Craighead George
Illustrated by Paul Meisel

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Today has been designated Ask Your Cat Questions Day. Most pet owners admit that they talk to their animals all the time.“How are you feeling today, Lancelot?” I just said to my puppy before sitting down. However, what if you really wanted to communicate with a cat—beyond meaningless questions such as, “Why did you bring […]

Animals, Cats
Featured on January 22

Millions of Cats by Wanda Gág

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December 15 has been designated Cat Herding Day. Certainly, this impossible task deserves to be celebrated! Eighty-two years ago a classic children’s book demonstrated what a lot of herded cats might look like—although it left the way to accomplish this feat unexplained. In the history of picture books, men have created the vast majority of […]

Animals, Award Winning, Cats, Newbery
Featured on December 15

The Cricket in Times Square by George Selden
Illustrated by Garth Williams

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More than fifty years ago a down-on-his-luck, New York City playwright who had graduated from Yale wandered into the Times Square subway station late at night and heard a cricket chirp. It reminded him of his childhood in Connecticut when his life had been more optimistic and innocent. Because he knew how to write scenes […]

Animals, Award Winning, Cats, Classical, Insects, Mice, Music, New York, Newbery
Featured on October 30

Daily children’s book recommendations and events from Anita Silvey.

Discover the stories behind the children’s book classics . . .

The new books on their way to becoming classics . . .

And events from the world of children’s books—and the world at large.