Chato Goes Cruisin’

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Chato Goes Cruisin', Gary Soto, Susan Guevara, childrens' picture book

Chato Goes Cruisin’ by Gary Soto, G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 2005

One of the New York Times 10 Best Illustrated Books of the Year, 2005

“…Susan Guevara just gets more and more creative with every Chato book she illustrates…with “Chato Goes Cruisin'” she’s hit her peak.  she’s grown so comfortable with her art that she’s willing to shake it up a bit for the sake of amusement.  So you have the usual Chato kookiness, but also some very cool black and white comic strips on the bottom of some of the pages to give you a little insight into Chato and Novio Boy’s heads. There are also countless amusing details all over this book just waiting for you to find them. When the dogs greet them at the dock, for example, the comic strip on the page shows a flag pointing in the opposite direction.  When our heroes can’t sleep for all the howling, they might have been cheered had they known that a cut-away of the boat shows a pack of very busy mice toiling relentlessly in the kitchen. Yum. Then there are the details that I think make it work the best. Novio Boy retains his title as the sexiest cat in children’s literature (check out the shot of him lifting weights).  And both he and Chato sport some mighty fine facial hair, making them the only felines I can think of to sport goatees and ‘staches in picture book fare.”  —Fuse #8, Elizabeth Bird