Nov 20, 2011

What's Michael?

Sleepless Nights
by Makoto Kobayashi

Volume 10. More kitty adventures. Michael's kitty-wife Popo ruins his naps because she likes to snuggle but always pushes him off the edge (of whatever surface they're snoozing on). The cats of one household are mortified when their owner shaves their fur because of the summer heat. Michael can't sleep and ruins everyone else's night, too. A curious kitten gets stuck inside a speaker. A high school is full of cats instead of students, but they can't help but break all the rules. A cat-food company struggles to figure out why cats refuse to eat their food but like the competitors'. Among other stories. And there was another Dracula appearance, but it was just so weird.

One thing I finally realized about these books; Michael the tabbycat cat always looks the same, but he appears in different households. In some homes he's a single cat, in another he has his kitty-wife and offspring, in a third he lives with four other adult cats. He lives with a single woman. He lives with a young couple who has a baby. He lives with an older couple. He prowls the alleys. He lives in an American Southern mansion. Or.... he scares off Dracula with his cute wide-eyed face!

It's just so ridiculous it's funny. Oh, and I like Michael far better than I ever did Garfield. Why doesn't my library have more of these books?

They've got my daughter reading more, too. She's into the Little House series right now, but balks at doing the assigned fifteen-minutes reading for her homework every day, even though she likes the book. But this morning after an (ominous-seeming) long stretch of silence I went to see what she was up to and found her curled up under a quilt with one of the What's Michael? books. She'd found the stack on my bed. 'Mom, these books are so funny!" I'm tickled that she's enjoying them so much.

Rating: 3/5 ....... 88 pages, 1995

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