Review: Mr. Putter and Tabby Ring the Bell by Cynthia Rylant

ring the bell

Mr. Putter and Tabby Ring the Bell by Cynthia Rylant, illustrated by Arthur Howard

When autumn arrives with apples, falling leaves and cool wind, Mr. Putter finds that he is missing school.  He wishes that he could return if only for one day.  Then he comes up with a solution:  visit a classroom along with Mrs. Teaberry and have Tabby and Zeke do tricks!  The only problem is that Tabby and Zeke really don’t do tricks.  But Mr. Putter is sure that they can be taught in time.  Unfortunately, it doesn’t all work out as Mr. Putter thinks it will.  It’s a complete disaster: but also completely funny. 

I have been a fan of Mr. Putter and Tabby for years.  They are at that reading level that is so hard, where the children are reaching towards chapter books but not quite there yet.  Rylant has taken a very unlikely character in Mr. Putter and turned him into a man that children will happily relate to.  Tabby on the other hand is easily beloved by young readers.

Howard’s illustrations are equally appealing, filled with plenty of color, lots of action, and more than a touch of silliness.  Readers from a broad range of ages will enjoy this new edition to the popular series. 

A great pick for when children are back at school, this book reads aloud well but works best when young readers tackle it themselves.  Look for the whole series and enjoy them all!  Appropriate for ages 4-6.

Reviewed from library copy.