cover image Tosca's Christmas

Tosca's Christmas

Matthew Sturgis, Anne Mortimer. Dial Books, $11.95 (26pp) ISBN 978-0-8037-0722-1

Poor Tosca the cat is totally neglected at Christmastime; she's regarded as a nuisance more than anything else. She gets kicked out of the kitchen when everyone is baking, and out of the bedroom when they are wrapping presents. Even Tosca's favorite chair is displaced by a strange tree that dominates the living room. When Tosca topples the tree (she was only trying to get to the angel to request a present) she is banished to the cold outdoors. In the end, it is Santa who befriends this gorgeous but woebegone cat, giving Tosca her very own present and providing the comfortable lap she's been looking for. Mortimer's loving portraits of Tosca are painted from the cat's floor-level perspective, and the reader never sees the faces of those unfeeling humans whose house she shares. Both Sturgis and Mortimer have succeeded in capturing the warmth of the holidays from a delightfully different viewpoint; Tosca's story serves to remind readers that Christmas is a season of loving and sharing. Ages 4-8. (Sept.)