Carolyn Phelan (Booklist, October 15, 1996 (Vol. 93, No. 4))
A Creole boy living on Galveston Island in the Gulf of Mexico, Bimmi goes out looking for his cat, Crabmeat, and finds him lying dead beside a coconut palm. Later, as he sits crying over his loss, another little cat comes up and befriends him. Naming her Kitty-Louise, Bimmi takes her home. When he realizes that someone may be missing her as much as he misses Crabmeat, Bimmi looks for Kitty-Louise's owner. His search brings an unexpected reward. The occasional use of Creole dialect may trip up younger readers, but the rhythmic, colloquial speech reads aloud well within the tautly written text. Each turn of the page brings another full-page (occasionally double-page) illustration. These beautifully crafted oil paintings interpret the settings, characters, and emotions with dignity. Category: Middle Readers. 1996, Clarion, $14.95. Gr. 3-4, younger for reading aloud.
Meredith Kiger, Ph.D. (Children's Literature)
This is a lovely, sensitive story of the loss of a pet cat and its meaning to its young owner named Bimmi. Set in a coastal village on the Gulf of Mexico, its languid prose interspersed with Creole dialect and accompanied by brilliantly painted illustrations transports the reader to another culture. When Bimmi finds another cat and attempts to return it to its owner, he is rewarded in a way he had not expected. 1996, Clarion Books, $14.95. Ages 7 to 10.