Shabby Sunday: A Kindle of Kittens by Rumer Godden & Lynne Byrnes #ChildrensBooks #VintageBooks #ShabbySunday #Kittens

Shabby Sunday

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I have a bunch of old vintage books and seem to keep acquiring more. One of my plans when  starting this blog was to do a post every now and then sharing one of my cherished vintage books. Then I thought there might be other book bloggers out there that have some vintage books, heirlooms, or maybe some old books from childhood that they might want to share.

This meme titled ‘Shabby Sunday’ is for those who would like to participate and share some of their old vintage books. Do you have some shabby books you’d like to share? If so, please feel free to participate as anyone can join. Feel free to use my meme image if you’d like to. If you decide to do this meme, please consider linking back to me in this post so that I can see the book you’re sharing.


Last time I shared:

Hans in Luck by Paul Galdone

Today’s Shabby Share:

A Kindle of Kittens by Rumer Godden 

Illustrated by Lynne Byrnes

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A Kindle of Kittens by Rumer Godden is a book I had to do some searching for. We were reading through an old book that had a recommended reading list of vintage children’s books in it, and this one sounded perfect for my 6-year-old.  We’re an animal loving family and cherish books like this. We fell in love with the cover right away.

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Our copy is a hardcover with a date of 1978. It’s in excellent, near perfect condition with clean, crisp pages. Most copies we found online were quite expensive. We were so lucky to find this one in good used condition on eBay for roughly $12.

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The setting is Rye, England, and the tale begins with a town cat— a striped tabby female who doesn’t have a home. They call her Cat, and many kind folk in the town take care of her by giving her scraps to eat. Most are kind to her, while some throw shoes at her, yelling “Shoo!” There’s even a cruel child who throws stones at poor Cat.

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One warm evening, she meets a male cat named He-Cat. Not long after their encounter, she begins to feel fat. She-Cat’s going to have kittens of her own, and she becomes the talk of the town.

The kindly people said, “Kittens! Poor little thing! We must send for the Animal Welfare Man. He will take them away.

The people who said “Shoo!” said the same thing, but not kindly. “Disgraceful! More stray cats! Telephone the Welfare Man at once.”

”Kittens!” said the rude boy. “Drown them in a bucket.”

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The kittens are born in an old greenhouse and She-Cat couldn’t be happier. She absolutely loves being a mom.

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It isn’t long before mother’s milk no longer satiates them as they grow up so quickly. She-Cat knows that soon she must find homes for her offspring.

‘It’s all very well for me,’ thought She-Cat, ‘to walk on the pavements at night, sleep on the bonnets of cars or in a wheelbarrow; to eat what people give me or what I can find in dustbins, but for my kittens…’

Her strong, motherly instincts tell her that her kittens must have homes to live in, to be warm, fed, and safe. She strategically places each one of her kittens with an ideal home, knowing full well they’ll be taken in and not refused.

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What’s so beautiful about this story is how She-Cat is such a loving mother, and these little kittens become happy blessings to everyone who receives them. The story has enough of a moral to open up strong discussion on topics such as homelessness, hunger, responsibility, and kindness towards others (especially animals), which is always good to share with children.

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I ended up choosing this book today because presently we have an outdoor cat who has two kittens of her own. This has been such a wonderful experience for our family, but my children understand that it isn’t good to continue bringing more cats into this world, and that kittens become adult cats who can then create more cats. This story also brings up the important topic of spaying and neutering cats, which is something that obviously wasn’t being practiced yet during this time period.

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The illustrations are wonderful. It was interesting to learn that the illustrator actually visited Rye, England, to paint and sketch the buildings and people in this book.

A Kindle of Kittens has become one of our favorites, and I’m glad we were able to obtain a copy for our home library.


Find this book on Goodreads and Amazon:

  • Grade Level: 3 – 4
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: The Viking Press; 1st American ed edition (March 26, 1979)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0670413011
  • ISBN-13: 978-0670413010

Other blogs who have participated in Shabby Sunday:

Nicky@ An Introverted Bookworm

Claire@ Brizzle Lass Books

Author Didi Oviatt

Sassy Brit@ Alternative-Read

Brittany @ PerfectlyTolerable

Shari @ Sharisakurai.com

Jennifer @ Jennifertarheelreader.com

Lisa @ Way Too Fantasy

*Please stop by these blogs to check out all of their beautiful shabby shares!*


Thanks for checking out Shabby Sunday! Have you read this book? Do you have any shabby books to share? Feel free to share your thoughts below.

♥️ Mischenko

5 thoughts on “Shabby Sunday: A Kindle of Kittens by Rumer Godden & Lynne Byrnes #ChildrensBooks #VintageBooks #ShabbySunday #Kittens

  1. starjustin

    What a nice story! I’ve always been a cat person so it was great to see that the Mom loved her kittens and found them homes.
    Wonderful review! I love the illustrations and knowing that the author actually made the trip to create them realistically makes the book all that more special.

    Liked by 1 person

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