Spires, Ashley. Binky Under Pressure. Toronto: Kids Can Press Ltd., 2011.
When presented with a stack of newly published children’s books donated to the CYA, I was elated to find Binky Under Pressure among the lot. Who could resist this adorable little space kitty? Binky Under Pressure is Ashley Spires’ charming third contribution to her Binky Adventure series. In this story, Binky the Space Cat, certified member of F.U.R.S.T. (Felines of the Universe Ready for Space Travel), meets a new kitty, Gracie, that his humans have taken in for adoption. Binky knows that Gracie isn’t just a normal, everyday Space Cat like himself, but he can’t quite put his paw on what’s different about her. All he knows is that he has to figure out why she’s in his house/terrestrial space station and, more importantly, how to make her leave!
Spires book reads like a graphic novel, complete with her own very charismatic illustrations. These set the book apart from other more traditional children’s picture books, and draw the reader in immediately with their variously sized frames and dusky palette. The style of the book will certainly appeal to the 7-10 age bracket for which the book is intended. As always, Binky is irresistibly funny, and Spires’ deadpan humour combines with her obvious love of cats (not to mention her intense dislike of wasps and bees) to bring the feline protagonists alive, and make the reader question what their own little fuzzbutts at home are really thinking. Binky Under Pressure is a perfect treat and would be a welcome addition to any childhood library.
-Laura Chadwick, CYA Member