Mr. Wuffles!

Common Sense Media says

Highly original, very visual tale of cat vs. tiny aliens.




ALA Best and Notable BooksCaldecott Medal and Honors

What parents need to know

Educational value

A very knowing representation of cat behavior along with an imagined view of space alien behavior.

Positive messages

Be friendly to outsiders -- even space aliens.

Positive role models

Mr. Wuffles is naturally curious. The space aliens are friendly and resourceful. The insects are friendly and helpful.

Violence & scariness

Very young kids could be creeped out by the notion of aliens invading someone's home or of images of insects as big as the aliens (granted, the aliens are tiny, but the ant-like insects are a lot taller than household ants).

Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Mr. Wuffles by Caldecott Honor-winning author David Weisner (Art & Max, Flotsam) is a wildly imaginative story of a cat who discovers a spaceship full of tiny aliens in his house. The drama of the cat menacing the aliens and the aliens teaming up with friendly insects to escape his clutches and get back home unfolds in wordless, comics-like panels loaded with subtle humor and clever sci-fi touches. 

Parents say

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Kids say

What's the story?

A curious house cat named Mr. Wuffles finds what looks like a small toy spaceship on the floor and begins to play with it and then falls asleep. What the reader sees, in comics-like panels, is that the \"toy\" is an actual spaceship full of tiny green aliens, whom the cat jostled when he was batting it around. He's disabled their ship, which they need to fix to get home. They leave the ship with some of their equipment, and Mr. Wuffles wakes up and chases them across the floor into an opening under the radiator. There, they find ant-like insects their size who help them get back home.

Is it any good?


MR. WUFFLES is an incredibly original picture book that takes a graphic-novel approach to storytelling, mixing action-packed panels with more traditional, full-page illustrations of a cat-and-mouse (actually, cat-and-aliens) game. The twist is that the aliens find friendly insects (who are also afraid of cats, judging from the wall drawings in their secret hiding place) to help them escape -- but not before posing together for some alien home movies.

There's much to look at in the colorful, detailed panels, and it's fascinating to see the ants and aliens communicate with each other in each one's own language, expressed in thought balloons with words not of our alphabet (the alien language looks like hieroglyphics; the ant one looks like little scratches). Readers can figure out what they're saying, but it can be challenging -- which also makes for layers of discovery upon multiple readings. Simply ingenious!

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about aliens from outer space. How do the ones in Mr. Wuffles compare with other aliens you've seen in books or movies? What's different about these? 

  • Do you think there's life on other planets? What would you do if you saw an alien on Earth?  

  • Do you think Mr. Wuffles acts like a real cat? What cat behavior does the author show in the pictures?

Book details

Author:David Wiesner
Illustrator:David Wiesner
Genre:Picture Book
Topics:Magic and fantasy, Cats, dogs, and mice, Space and aliens
Book type:Fiction
Publisher:Clarion Books
Publication date:October 1, 2013
Number of pages:32
Publisher's recommended age(s):4 - 8
Read aloud:4 - 8
Read alone:6 - 8
Available on:Hardback, iBooks, Kindle, Nook
Awards:ALA Best and Notable Books, Caldecott Medal and Honors

This review of Mr. Wuffles! was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Kid, 9 years old May 14, 2014

Great Book!!!!!!!!!!

This book is so great! Mostly I don't like books like this, but this one is so good! The only inappropriate thing in this is some aliens that some kids might find creepy. Mr. Wuffles is so cute!
What other families should know
Great messages


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