Newbery 1929: The Pigtails of Ah Lee Ben Loo and Millions of Cats

I am making my way through the 1929 Newbery books.  In 1929, six Newbery honor books were chosen plus the Medal winner.

Millions of Cats was the first picture book that I encountered as a Newbery Honor.  This is such a nice story.


It is about a couple who want to adopt a cat, but who end up with literally millions of cats.  The story focuses on how they acquired the cats and then how they were able to end up with only one cat.  It’s a fun story.  I enjoyed the absolute hyperbole of the idea of bringing home that many cats.

In the end, the sweet couple has a wonderful cat addition to their little family.


I guess that was a spoiler, but it’s an inevitable ending I think!  This is a book I’d love to read with a young class.  The illustrations of the millions of cats and how much they ate and drank would be a lot of fun to share with young children.

The other book I’ve read (kinda) is The Pigtails of Ah Lee Ben Loo.  This book is full of silly almost nursery type rhymes and tales.  I really didn’t get into it all that much and ended up skimming through it.  It might be a good one to read in small chunks before bedtime, but I really didn’t find the stories incredibly engaging.

What I did find engaging about the book however, and what made it definitely worth looking at were the silhouette illustrations.


I spent a lot of time looking at the illustrations which were filled with energy and humor.

pigtails2I love the dairymaid in the picture above!