A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Shows some typical characteristics of dogs, such as liking bones and balls. Shows some features of Valentine's Day: sending cards and giving presents and flowers.
Don't hold on to prejudices about whole groups of those who are different from you. You might be surprised to find someone of a group you think you dislike who makes a good neighbor and friend. "Valentine's Day doesn't have to be all mushy"; you can make a Valentine's Day card for a friend.
Positive Role Models
Cat assumes the worst about Dog at first but then realizes Dog has been reaching out as a friend. Cat shows you can change; you don't have to hold on to your prejudices. Dog is nice and generous and wants to be friends. The narrator is kind and patient and lets Cat know when he's being mean or selfish.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Here Comes Valentine Cat is another holiday-inspired romp from the author-illustrator team of Deborah Underwood and Claudia Rueda, following Here Comes Santa Cat and Here Comes the Easter Cat. This Valentine story is about friendship, not romance, and shows that even dogs and cats can be friends. The broader message is you can be friends with anyone if you don't let your biases and assumptions stand in the way.
Is It Any Good?
Cat learns to drop his prejudice and open up to his neighbor in this cute Valentine's Day story. In the typical motif of this series, the narrator asks Cat questions, and Cat answers by holding up signs with mainly images on them. The jokes are light and funny, as Cat once again conquers his negative tendencies.
Claudia Rueda's spare but expressive illustrations perfectly capture all the shifts in Cat's changing emotions. And the broader point about not holding on to preconceived notions about others is a great message for kids -- and grown-ups.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.