By Leslie Lindsay

I love Charlie. I love basset hounds. And I love the holidays…so what’s not to love about CHARLIE AND THE CHRISTMAS KITTY?! Known as “The Pioneer Woman,” Ree Drummond knows a thing or two about basset hounds. And cooking. And baking. And bacon, too. She also loves animals and so when it comes to interrupting Charlie she’s got it down to a science.

When Charlie feels a bit upstaged by a tiny cuddly and mischivous kitten, he soon realizes that maybe, just maybe the kitty is okay. He may even like the way she purrs and snuggles up to him. Just when things are going well, here comes the cutest little basset puppy…oh no! Poor Charlie.

The illustrations are to die-for. I just adore how the illustrator  (Diane DeGroat) is able to capture the intricacies and mannerisms of a basset hound…and I should know, we have one!

If you get the book, here are some talking points and fun activities:

  • Have you ever felt upstaged by someone or something in your life? A sibling or friend got to do something you didn’t?
  • What changed? How were you able to see the event/situation in new light?
  • How might you feel if you were Charlie and a new animal came into your home?
  • Write a different ending to this story. What if the new puppy didn’t come…what might have happened?
  • Do you think cats and dogs can get along? How about boys and girls? People of one religion versus another? Friends of different colors/cultures/backgrounds? Give some examples.
  • Draw a picture of Charlie and his kitty.
  • For more activities, including some of Charlie’s favorite recipies and coloring pages, see this HarperCollins page.
  • For more on Ree Drummond

CHARLIE AND THE CHRISTMAS KITTY is one not to be missed for any animal/basset lover but especially those famlies who have children between the ages of 4-8 years old. [image source: as retrieved on 12.02.14]


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