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A Squirrelly Situation: Calpurnia Tate, Girl Vet

by Jacqueline Kelly

Series: Calpurnia Tate (5)

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281853,387 (3.33)None
Featuring the charming characters from the Newbery Honor Book, The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate, this exciting chapter book series introduces young readers to Callie Vee and the rough and tumble world of turn of the century Texas. When Travis finds an abandoned baby squirrel, he brings him home and names him Fluffy. But Mother is not so sure that Fluffy is such a great family pet, and neither is Thud, the cat. Will Fluffy be able to steer clear of these two and find a home in the Tate household?… (more)
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Description
Bringing home a baby squirrel – what’s the worst that could happen?

When Calpurnia’s brother brings home a baby squirrel for their cat to mother with her young kitten, Calpurnia isn’t sure hoe well it will work. Would their cat mother it or eat it, what will their mother thing, and how will a squirrel take to living inside a kitchen?

Despite all the obvious questions and challenges, Calpurnia doesn’t think about how a pet squirrel could be helpful.

Disclaimer
I acquired this book for free, through a library box that provides free books to anyone for personal use (essentially a Little Free Library). There was no agreement with the author, publisher, or any third party that I would publish a review. The following review is unsolicited, unbiased, and all opinions are my own.

Review – Spoiler Free
This was a nice, short read. I loved the line illustrations throughout the book, you can get a good feeling of what all the characters are like even in such a short book, and there was some realistic problem solving peppered throughout.

Having picked this book up randomly, I knew from the title that it was part of a series, but didn’t know how far along through the series it was. Turns out it’s the fifth book in the second series about Calpurnia Tate – so it’s essentially the 7th book, that’s pretty far along through a storyline. You can read this as a standalone like we did, but you’ll definitely be lacking some background information. It’s supposed to be set in 1899, which I only had a suspicion of from a few illustrations and some lines that hinted at the timely social etiquette.

This is predominantly a slice-of-life story. There are a few bits that didn’t seem necessary or relevant to the story, but they don’t take away from it. And the core of the story doesn’t revolve around Calpurnia’s vet skills, though they are definitely used a few times.

I had a bit of annoyance with a scene where Calpurnia and her Grandfather deliberately lie to her mother. I have a hard time reading scenes with my children where, without an adequate explanation directly before or after, a character does something underhanded. This particular situation was explained a little, and I understood the explanation, but my children, having not been exposed to the expectations of 1899 (and not having read the previous books, or previous series to introduce it to them) simply saw it as a lie. I am always trying to be aware of what the books I read are subconsciously teaching, (whether they are doing it intentionally or not) – and this made me a little hesitant.

Overall, it was a nice read, but I wasn’t in love with it. I would like to read the first book of the first series, to see how much we enjoy it, and go from there. If we like the first series, then this story makes a nice addition to that world, but if we don’t, I’ll probably never read this again. ( )
  GCAnnison | Nov 1, 2021 |
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Featuring the charming characters from the Newbery Honor Book, The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate, this exciting chapter book series introduces young readers to Callie Vee and the rough and tumble world of turn of the century Texas. When Travis finds an abandoned baby squirrel, he brings him home and names him Fluffy. But Mother is not so sure that Fluffy is such a great family pet, and neither is Thud, the cat. Will Fluffy be able to steer clear of these two and find a home in the Tate household?

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