By Nikki McClure
In cut-paper artist Nikki McClure's latest picture book, a kitten practices the basics of feline behavior over the course of a day. A single word of text per spread teaches readers "how to be a cat"—how to stretch, clean, pounce, feast—while the striking paper cuts illustrate the kitten's attempts to imitate an adult cat's mastery of each skill. At times the kitten triumphantly succeeds, and at other times the kitten struggles, in vignettes that range from whimsical to profound.
A celebration of all things feline, How to Be a Cat also tells a universal story of mastering life skills, and of the sometimes tender, sometimes stern relationship between parent and child, teacher and pupil. Cat lovers of all ages will connect to this loving portrayal of a mentor-student relationship.