The Cat in the Hat Comes Back – Dr. Seuss

More in the Series – The Cat in the Hat
“More in the Series” scores the other books in a series where one (or more) of the books have made it into the 1001 Books list. Mostly because I’m a bit of a completionist. 

POINTS: 2 out of 10.

Bechdel: 0 points
Variety of characters: 0 points
Good story:  2 points.
Discretionary ideological points:  0 points.

I had never read this one before now, and, honestly, I was a bit disappointed. I have to assume this is why Seuss didn’t generally do sequels that much?

To get the metrics out of the way, much like its predecessor, this book fails on Bechdel (though Sally does get a few more lines in this one) and on diversity. But it also is just kind of a bit wishywashy in comparison to the original.

None of my defenses of the original Cat in the Hat really stand up with this one. Basically the Cat shows up, makes a mess, and spends the whole book trying to clean up the mess by essentially moving it around until it is all over the snow. The mini cats (A-Z) that apparently live in his Hat are revealed and try to help, until eventually all the snow is pink and the very last teeniest tiniest Cat Z takes off his hat and there is a VOOM! and everything is clean and the path is shovelled and all is well.

I feel like this book fails to have the tricksterish charm of the original and is really just an excuse to teach the alphabet. Much of the rhyme is built around the alphabet, the story definitely doesn’t feel as satisfying as the original, and there isn’t even any sign of the Fish who acted so beautifully as a foil to the Cat in the first book.

I mean, we did enjoy reading it because even when he’s not great, Dr. Seuss is better than most. The rhyme is still fun to read and races along at a good pace, but as a sequel I found it not very satisfying. I have given it the good story points from both of us because it was fine enough to read, but for the most part I’d be inclined to say stick with the original.




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