Read it Again: Anton and Cecil, Cats at Sea by Lisa Martin and Valerie Martin

Book Review, Middle Grade
Anton and Cecil, Cats at Sea by Lisa Martin, Valerie Martin, and Kelly Murphy (Illustrations)

Age Range: 8 – 12 years

Grade level: 3-7

Series: Anton and Cecil (Book 1)

Hardcover: 256 pages

Publisher: Algonquin Young Readers; First Edition edition (October 8, 2013)

Source: From publisher

About the Book:

Black and white line drawings illustrate each chapter.

For ages 8-12, grades 3-7.

A swashbuckling story of two very different cat brothers and their adventures at sea.


Cat brothers Cecil and Anton are as different in personality as they are in looks. Cecil, stocky and black with white patches, thirsts for seafaring adventure as he roams the docks of his harborside home, taking day trips on fishing boats when the chance comes along. Slim, gray Anton prefers listening to the sailors’ shanties at the town saloon. But one day when Anton does venture to the port, he’s stolen off the dock, and the next thing he knows, he’s at sea.

Knowing little of the wide open ocean that lies beyond the harbor, Cecil boards another ship in hopes of finding Anton. But what begins as a rescue mission turns into a pair of high seas adventures, with thrills and danger bubbling under every wave.

Anton takes on a fierce rat, outwits hungry birds, and forges a forbidden friendship, while Cecil encounters dolphins and whales and finds himself in the middle of a pirate raid. On an ocean as vast as the one Anton and Cecil have discovered, will they see home—or each other—ever again?

Orange Prize­−winning author Valerie Martin’s and Lisa Martin’s colorful cast of characters, rich historical detail, and lyrical storytelling will delight fans of such classic animal adventures as The Wind in the Willows, Stuart Little, and Poppy.

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My Thoughts the Second Time Around:

I read this book on my own when it was first published and I loved it. I was excited to get a copy of the finished book from the publisher and I read it out loud to my kids. It was a little over their heads, but my oldest daughter liked it quite a bit.

As for me, I enjoyed it almost as much the second time around as I did the first. The authors created a wonderful story about two cats and their adventures at sea, complete with whales, pirates, and mysterious islands. Parts of the book get bogged down with details about ships, but for the most part it’s a fun adventure story that kids ages 8-12 will enjoy.
 

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