Thursday, April 15, 2010

Binky the Space Cat

Like a ton of other people, I am curious about what my two cats are doing while I am away at work. I may have an answer with Ashley Spires's graphic novel Binky the Space Cat. Binky is a cat who actually has never left the confines of his home, but dreams of space travel and battling alien creatures. Instead, he stays home in order to protect his humans from space aliens that look suspiciously like flies. Binky's reasoning is that bug and aliens are the same thing since "both can fly, have big eyes, steal your food, and lay eggs." He does a lot of research (i.e. experimenting, reading) to reach this conclusion. Binky is a member of F.U.R.S.T. (Felines of the Universe Ready for Space Travel) and begins constructing his own rocket ship. Just when he is ready to blast off into space, Binky realizes something very important has been left off his list. It is this thing that determines the fate of our feline superhero.

Binky the Space Cat is a very funny graphic novel that will appeal to early and/or reluctant readers. The text is easy to read, but there are several complex layers to what is happening in the story. You can discuss point of view and how the author makes you think about whether something is actually happening in the story or if Binky is just dreaming. Any students that have experience with cats will easily make connections.

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