Cover image for A kitten called Moonlight
A kitten called Moonlight
Waddell, Martin.
Personal Author:
First U.S. edition.
Publication Information:
Cambridge, MA : Candlewick Press, 2001.
Physical Description:
32 unnumbered pages : color illustrations ; 24 x 28 cm
A little girl and her mother recall how a special kitten came into their lives one dark and stormy night.
Reading Level:
AD 350 Lexile.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR LG 2.7 0.5 46584.

Reading Counts RC K-2 2.1 2 Quiz: 24367 Guided reading level: K.
Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PIC. BK. Juvenile Fiction Picture Books

On Order



Martin Waddell and Christian Birmingham's nostalgic picture book about an adored pet is also a tender celebration of family storytelling. "I'd like my story again, Charlotte said. The one I like best, about Moonlight and me." Once, Charlotte's mother tells her, a very small white kitten was alone and lost. But then a little girl, driving along the coast with her mother, saw two eyes shining brightly in the darkness. "I know who saw them!" says Charlotte, and together she and her mother describe a cold winter night by the sea, a lost kitten, and a brave rescue by moonlight. Martin Waddell's magical story and Christian Birmingham's luminous paintings tell a warm and evocative tale--one sure to inspire young children to chronicle some of their own family adventures.

Author Notes

Martin Waddell was born April 10, 1941, in Belfast, Ireland. He always wanted to be a professional soccer player. After having played for junior teams in Ireland, he left school at fifteen and held a variety of jobs, including working at a publishing company and as a night switchboard operator for a taxi company.

Waddell is now one of the most prolific and successful contemporary children's writers, with more than one hundred books to his credit, some of them under his pseudonym Catherine Sefton.

He won the 1986 Other Award, for his book Starry Night, which was also a runner up for The Guardian Children¿s Fiction Award and was shortlisted for the Young Observer Teenage Fiction Prize. He has twice won the Smarties Book Prize, for Farmer Duck and Can't You Sleep Little Bear? He also won the 1989 Kurt Mascher Award for The Park In The Dark, the 1990 Bets Book For Babies for Rosie¿s Babies and has been shortlisted for the 1992 Smarties Book Prize for Along The Lonely Road.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Ages 3-6. A rescue adventure is part of the idyllic pet story in this glowing picture book. Charlotte asks for her favorite tale; she loves to hear it again and again. She and Mommy tell it together: One dark, cold night Charlotte glimpsed a small white kitten, lost and alone. She insisted on searching for him, and she and Mommy looked everywhere until they found him on a rock by the sea. Charlotte called him Moonlight, and they brought him home. The big, soft chalk-pastel pictures with lots of blue and purple show the windswept outdoors in the moonlight; in contrast are cozy close-ups of the child and her mother in the golden lamplight, with the furry kitten now safe on Charlotte's lap. A sweet story with two happy endings. --Hazel Rochman

Publisher's Weekly Review

Airy, light-infused chalk pastels illuminate this tender tale-within-a-tale of a girl, her mother and a stray rescued one cold, wintry night. Curled up in her house by the sea, Charlotte asks her mother to tell her again about that eventful night when, coming home in their car, the child was convinced she spied two bright eyes reflected in the headlights. At Charlotte's prodding, they searched for the creature and discovered a small white kitten that Charlotte named Moonlight (because "we'd never have found him without the moonlight"). Related entirely in dialogue, the story exudes all the warmth of a mother obliging her child's frequent interruptions and embellishments and showcases Waddell's (Owl Babies) keen ear for the natural ebb and flow of conversation. Birmingham's (A Baby for Grace) artistry evokes the loving bond between mother and daughter; the misty, softly shaded portraits are shot through with light, from the faint glow of a streetlight and silvery stream of moonlight on the sea to the cozy golden warmth of their home. Ages 3-6. (Feb.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

School Library Journal Review

PreS-Gr 2-In this warm reminiscence, a mother and her young daughter recall how a stray kitten came into their lives. As they sit together outside on a sunny day, both of them share in the telling of their favorite story. After returning home with her mother on a cold winter night, Charlotte caught a glimpse of something near the shore. She was unable to sleep and so the two of them went outside to search the beach, where they discovered a frightened white kitten crouching on a rock, illuminated only by the moonlight. They rescued him, cared for him, and named him Moonlight. Although the plot revolves around the lost animal, the book is really about the relationship between the mother and daughter. Charlotte loves telling the story because "it's about us-Moonlight and Mommy and me." The impressionist illustrations are rendered in chalk pastels. Subdued tones of blue and violet depict the night scenes, underscoring the cat's frightening predicament, while cheerful yellows and greens light the outdoor scenes and echo the mother and daughter's joy at their success. A lovely book for one-on-one sharing.-Linda M. Kenton, San Rafael Public Library, CA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.