New Berkeley Breathed book will charm all ages

“Wait up!” your friend says, and you stop.

That’s what friends do: They stick around when things get weird, and they make sure you’re never left behind. And in the new book “The Bill the Cat Story” by Berkeley Breathed, they wait for you forever if that’s what it takes.

Once upon a time, there was a little boy named Binkley who lived in a spot called Bloom County. It was a great place to think but not a good place to be alone, so Binkley’s dad took him to pick a pal. Binkley chose an orange cat with a wiry-bent tail, and he named his new friend Bill, because “it rhymed with daffodil and landfill.”

And they were happily ever minute-and-a-half because Binkley didn’t know it, but Bill had already been adopted by someone else.

Binkley was heartbroken. So was a “dark, mysterious … stranger named Opus,” who was watching and wanted to help. Opus gave Bill a pair of smiley underpants.

It was the best he could do as Bill rode away.

Time passed, and Binkley matured. He tried to forget Bill, but it wasn’t easy; he told people he was over that cat, but that was a lie. More than anything, Binkley hoped Bill was having fun and that he was happy.

The truth was that Bill was probably not happy. It’s hard to tell but here’s proof: He first landed in the North Pole, as a sled cat, which was dangerous. Then he went to Africa, as an elephant herder, and that was dangerous, too. Finally, he landed halfway around the world at a place where he was given foot massages and bananas … which wasn’t too bad, actually, except that it didn’t last, either.

And that adventure was how Bill ended up being dumped on the doorstep of someone from his past, someone with a giving heart who was brave enough to withstand attack rabbits, adult troubles and dreams that you just can’t let go.

Indeed, Bill was with someone who “knew what needed to be done.”

I have no socks. Breathed just charmed them off me.

As the first new Breathed book in a very long time, “The Bill the Cat Story” recommends an appropriate reader-age in its subtitle, and for good reason. Kids will love the colorfully wild illustrations and the basic tale of love and friendship. They’ll appreciate Bill’s underwear and his goofy “ack.”

But adults are just as much the audience here — especially those who’ve found laughs and tears inside Breathed’s “Bloom County.” Fully half the book (if not more!) is for that fan-base, from the hilarious cartoons to the roots of Bill’s presence in Binkley’s life. There are nudge-wink inside-jokes on many pages, a harking back to other books and story-threads and a surprise look at where Opus lives.

So buy this book for your toddler, and borrow it back as much as you need to. I predict you’ll need to — a lot. For both of you, “The Bill the Cat Story” is worth the wait.

View publishes Terri Schlichenmeyer’s reviews of books for children weekly.

Underground home was built as Cold War-era hideaway
The underground house at 3970 Spencer Street is one of the valley’s most unusual homes built 26 feet underground in 1978 by Girard “Jerry” B. Henderson, who, planned to survive the end of the world there.
Lip Smacking Foodie Tours takes you where the locals go
Donald Contursi talks about Lip Smacking Foodie Tours, which offers walking tours of restaurants on and off Las Vegas Boulevard with food samples and tidbits of history about the places they visit.
Bump stock manufacturers under fire
The Justice Department said last month that it had started the process to amend federal firearms regulations to clarify that federal law defines bump stocks as machine guns.
Art Bell’s Top 10 Shows
A selection of radio host Art Bell’s most popular shows.
Longtime Las Vegas attorney John Momot dies at age 74
Criminal defense attorney John Momot, who represented mob figures and even played himself in the movie “Casino,” has died.
David Copperfield in court after man injured during magic trick
The attorney for a British man who is suing illusionist David Copperfield said his client suffered serious injuries after being called on stage during Copperfield's show at MGM Grand.
5 things connecting Las Vegas and Marilyn Monroe
1. Marilyn Monroe, known then as Norma Jeane, obtained her first divorce in Las Vegas at the age of 20 on September 13, 1946. 2. According to some biographers, Monroe lived at 604 S. 3rd Street for four months during the summer of 1946. The house has since been torn down and is now the site of a parking lot. 3. In 1954, Monroe almost married Joe DiMaggio in Las Vegas but the wedding was called off last minute. The wedding was to be held at the Hotel El Rancho Vegas which was located on the southwest corner of Sahara Avenue and Las Vegas Boulevard. 4. Las Vegas has at least one road dedicated to the star. Marilyn Monroe Avenue is located in east Las Vegas and intersects with Betty Davis Street and Cary Grant Court. 5. There are currently more than 20 Marilyn Monroe impersonators for hire in the Las Vegas Valley.
Sir Richard Branson announces purchase of Hard Rock Hotel
Sir Richard Branson, founder of the Virgin Group, has acquired the Hard Rock Hotel with partners and plans to turn it into a Virgin-branded property by the end of 2019.
3 Centennial High School students killed in Calif. crash (Full)
Three Centennial High School students were killed Thursday morning in Southern California when their vehicle was struck by a suspected drunken driver while they were enjoying their spring break, according to a family member of one of the victims.
Retail Restroom Sexual Assault Suspect
Las Vegas police are asking for help finding a man they said groped a woman in a south Las Vegas Valley restroom. (Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department)
Calvary Christian Learning Academy, “There was no fair warning.”
Samantha O’Brien, whose three-year-old daughter attended the Calvary Christian Learning Academy daycare, found out Monday night when her daughter’s teacher called about the school closing.
Mojave Max at Springs Preserve
File footage of Mojave Max at Springs Preserve. (Springs Preserve)
Bark-Andre Furry meets Capitals superfan Ovie the Bulldog
Two of NHL's furriest fans met at the Forum Shops in Caesars Palace on Tuesday, June 18, 2018, in Las Vegas. Vegas Golden Knights superfan Bark-Andre Furry and Washington Capitals superfan Ovie the Bulldog shared a plate of meatballs and spaghetti with help from Logan, "The Girl with the Hat." (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Art Bell’s Top 10 Shows
A selection of radio host Art Bell’s most popular shows.
Calvary Christian Learning Academy, “There was no fair warning.”
Samantha O’Brien, whose three-year-old daughter attended the Calvary Christian Learning Academy daycare, found out Monday night when her daughter’s teacher called about the school closing.
News Headlines
Local Spotlight
Home Front Page Footer Listing
You May Like

You May Like