John R. Pancella

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Last Updated on May 5, 2015, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 145

The opening paragraphs [of Wild Cat] describe a birth, with the mother licking and eating the membranes, followed by another birth, on dirty rags, of a kitten that is deformed and defective. The mother eats this kitten along with the extra birth substance. This may be questionable fare for many children. It is realism, all right…. There are details about a first mouse kill and a fight to the death with a rat. The sensuous encounter with a big white tom, with the young female "hot with the sudden flush of maturity," and other vivid descriptions, leads the story full circle to another birth of kittens. This is wildlife in Manhattan, and teachers and parents should carefully consider whether to use the book with their children.

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John R. Pancella, "'Wild Cat'," in Appraisal (copyright © 1976 by the Children's Science Book Review Committee), Vol. 9, No. 1, Winter, 1976, p. 34.

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