February 1, 2015
 A New Title, Author Note, and Book Giveaway


Dear Readers,     


In this issue of KidsBookClubbing, you'll meet Hissy Fitz, a grouchy insomniac cat looking for sleep in a noisy household in Patrick Jennings' new chapter book.


Judy Gelman and Vicki Levy Krupp




Ages 7 - 9 / Chapter book / Egmont USA  


Enter to win a set of HISSY FITZ by Patrick Jennings for your book club by emailing the author's publisher (write "KidsBookclubbing" in the subject line). 


Dear Reader:  


I'm a cat person. I adopted my first feline the year I wrote my first book, twenty years ago. I've lived with five more cats since. One of my books, Guinea Dog, was inspired by and dedicated to one of my cats, Soobie.

Yet during those twenty years, I did not write a single book about a cat. I wrote stories about dogs, guinea pigs, snakes, ferrets, bats, rats, owls, even pigeons, but no cats. Not until now.

Two years ago, while visiting a Michigan elementary school, some fifth-graders brainstormed a story about a cat that couldn't sleep. Later I created the character Hissy Fitz, a very grouchy British Shorthair, and wrote a story  about him.

I wonder if you have a story about your pet, or pets. I bet you do. Visit my website, http://patrickjennings.com, click on "Contact" (http://www.patrickjennings.com/contact/), and share your story with me.

Patrick Jennings

ook Reviews:


"This smartly written beginning chapter book introduces young readers to a cat named Hissy... Readers will chuckle along as they see a day played out from Hissy's point of view. With its short chapters, snappy dialogue, and fast-moving plot, this book will be popular with newly independent readers who enjoy Megan McDonald's "Stink" books (Candlewick), Suzy Kline's "Horrible Harry" titles (Viking), Hilary McKay's "Lulu" series (Albert Whitman), and other breezy chapter books."
- School Library Journal

"Young fans of YouTube's Grumpy Cat will be smitten with Hissy, the crabby feline hero of Jenning's (the Guinea Dog series) latest animal tale."
 - Publishers Weekly

"...cat lovers will see their feline friends in Hissy."
 - Kirkus Reviews 


Discussion questions:    


1.  Discuss the point of view from which the author tells this story. How would this story be different if it were written from Georgia's point of view? Zeb's? What do you learn about Hissy that you might not learn if the story were told from a human point of view?

2.  Why does Hissy go out at night? Who does he meet? Discuss how his life is different from theirs. What importance can you attribute to the cat soccer game?

3.  Why does Hissy return to the dumpster? What does this act say about Hissy's character? Why do you think the author included this scene?

4.  Why is Hissy so frustrated with the family? Think about an animal that you may have in your home or one that belongs to someone you know. Discuss how that animal might view his or her surroundings.

5.  Compare and contrast the ways in which the twins, Abe and Zeb, interact with Hizzy. What can you learn about how to treat a pet from this story?

To learn more about Patrick Jennings and Hissy Fitz, visit the author's website or follow him on Twitter.  


Author Call-In Information:
Patrick is happy to call-in to (or skype with) your club. To arrange a call or visit, email the publisher or contact Patrick via his website.  

  • A maximum of 10 books is available for each book club giveaway.
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