This is a WONDERFUL book, full of compassion and humor. If you don't like cats, don't let that stop you from reading this book! The illustrations are artful and appropriately madcap, capturing exactly the mood of the mealtime exploits of the family. Bright colors and expressiveness draw you into the story. And it is a story to which all families can relate: Kids can be trouble at the dinner table. The author helps us see that they don't mean any true harm or are not out to spite their parents; they are kids being kids.
What I loved most about the book is the fact that, after an initial dinner disaster (where parent and kitten ideas of what's good for dinner are as different as night and day) -- and it IS a disaster -- the kittens are not scolded or severely punished; instead, they are apologetic and everyone agrees to try again. The next time around compromise is used, and the result, while not a page from Better Homes & Gardens, is, as Bert the kitten says: "ABSOLUTELY PERFECT!" The key: It's not truly "perfect" in that everyone behaves and whatnot, but that everyone is satisfied with the outcome.
This book communicates love, tenderness and caring. The author does a wonderful job of showing us how we can relate to each other -- whether as family members or as neighbors or as strangers -- in a way full of respect and love. It is the willingness to try again despite trying circumstances that arises out of love that comes shining through in this wonderful picture book. And adults, check out the telling humorous details such as the LARGE ketchup bottle, or the color of the drink in Bert's glass at the end of the book (it too signals compromise). Enjoy!