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Castaway Cats: 01/05/10
Castaway Cats is a counting and rhyming book in the vein of Click, Clack, Splish, Splash by Doreen Cronin. It counts up to 15 and back down from 15 while telling the story of a boatload of castaway cats trying to survive on an island in the middle of the South Pacific.
The book opens on a scene similar to one which gets Mrs. Moore washed up by the lighthouse in The Lighthouse, the Cat and the Sea by Leigh W. Rutledge except with happier results. A mixture of breeds wash ashore, including a number of kittens. The one who ends up calling the shots is a calico named mittens.
Had I not read Cats are Not Peas I would have tossed the book aside at the appearance of Mittens. See, his calico is a very buff Tom. Under normal circumstances, calicos should be female but sometimes you'll get a chimera cat (XXY) who will be both male and calico.
What the cats have to decide is whether to try to affect a rescue either by building a bonfire or by building a boat or if they want to make a home for themselves on the island. They spend half the book trying one thing only to come to realization that separately they had settled on a very different outcome.