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4.17  ·  Rating details ·  312 ratings  ·  88 reviews
Watch out, mice! This cat is a sumo champion!

A stray kitty gets a job in a sumo stable, chasing mice in exchange for food. But when eating like a sumo wrestler slows our feline hero down, he realizes he must train like a wrestler, too. Through hard work and perseverance--and with a little help from a big buddy--SumoKitty is born!
Hardcover, 50 pages
Published August 13th 2019 by Charlesbridge Publishing
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Average rating 4.17  · 
Rating details
 ·  312 ratings  ·  88 reviews

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Jun 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019, ala19, picture-books
Just the right ratio of educational info and fun.

Learned about sumo wrestling, tied our tongues with some Japanese words and watched a kitty become a sumo wrestler.
Feb 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book is SO ADORABLE!!! The artwork is GORGEOUS, the narrator is a CAT and the story is simple, yet poignant. 5, absolutely purr-fect, stars! Highly recommended to all!
Aug 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Young Cat Lovers / Children Interested in Sumo Wrestling
A stray kitty, looking for some food and longing for a home, finds a way to make himself useful at the heya, or training center for sumo wrestlers. But when his plentiful diet makes him a little chubby, and he can no longer catch the mice, out he goes again. Fortunately for our rotund feline, his special sumo friend Kuma lets him in again, and this kitty cat begins to train, eventually getting fit enough to restore his honor as a mouser. Kuma meanwhile, inspired by SumoKitty, manages to beat the ...more
Jan Polep
Sep 02, 2019 rated it liked it
I struggled with the pronunciation of some of the Japanese words but oh my goodness, SumoKitty is so much fun to look at. This cat lives with Sumo wrestlers and has the job of catching mice in exchange for food and lodging. Let's just say he puts on a few pounds and I'll let you discover the rest of the plot. Fun one.
Woody Chichester
Aug 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Beautiful illustration frames this fantastic tale of a stray cat who earns his keep (and plenty of tasty food) at the Sumo's heya as a mousecatcher. Eventually, the mice outsmart him and he needs to learn the ways of the Sumo if he wants to stay. Educational and fun story. I loved the cats expression in so many pictures.
Apr 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I won this book in a raffle. I was delighted to read it, because the fat sumokitty does resemble my Sasha. It is an adorable and funny book and the illustrations are great!
Mark's wife Sue
May 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: sumo
Sumo AND kitties?!! What could be better?!
Feb 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Really cute children's book with great pictures. Enjoyable for everyone.
Oct 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picturebooks
This story will teach you about the art and practice of sumo wrestling, as well as illustrate the saying "fall seven times, get up eight." The illustrations are adorable.
Jun 27, 2019 rated it it was ok
It was fine. I appreciated the effort to incorporate Japanese words and pronunciations, although the story itself was just okay in my opinion.
Jul 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: yabc-reviews
Educational and entertaining, SUMOKITTY teaches children the value of never giving up and working hard for what you want. Kitty is a stray who likes to hang around the heya where the rikishi (sumo wrestlers) live, mainly because of the food. One day, when the Okamisan (manager of the heya) finds him, she is going to kick him out but then allows him to stay in exchange for taking care of the mice.

Kitty watches the rikishi practice and eats lots and lots of mice until he is fat and the mice are
A homeless kitty finds his way into a sumo wrestling training camp, but it's soon found he's sneaking food, thus is thrown out again. The appearance of mice saves the day because one of the wrestlers, Kuma, is afraid of mice. If this Kitty can take care of THAT problem, he's home, and fed! Unfortunately, he doesn't follow the tough workouts that the wrestlers do, becomes a bit heavy, without energy. Learning the ways of the training makes a big difference and I had to cheer SumoKitty on to his ...more
Apr 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
The sumo wrestlers (rikishi) live in their training center (heya) with a stray cat. The cat found his way in and steals food when he can, but when the housekeeper (Okamisan) catches the cat, she puts him to work. He can eat with the men, but he has to chase away the mice. But when the mice are gone, the kitty gets fat, so the mice return. Now, he must learn to focus and fight like a sumo to keep his job.

Magnificent full page illustrations paired with the comic facial expressions of the kitty
Oct 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
When a small, hungry kitty seeks a home at a sumo wrestler’s heya (training center), he is quickly put to work chasing off mice in exchange for a home. All too quickly, he becomes fat on noodle soup and complacency, while one of the wrestlers allows in the fear of defeat. With each of them helping the other learn humility, while overcoming their fears they will both rise to the challenge to succeed.
Taking wise and notable Japanese sayings and spinning them into action, Sumokitty is the
Krissy Neddo
Sep 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Cannot wait to read this to all of my elementary students! So much fun! So far kids loved it.
Took some practice with Japanese words, but I listened to the audio on Audible to help. The author's inclusion of pronunciation is great! I made a Google Slideshow to accompany my read aloud. Kids loved learning the Japanese words!
Some people are confused or upset that it has too much "Japanese" or "wrestling" or that they are not sure if the cat is a stray or not. Seriously? The cover or title didn't
Sep 20, 2019 rated it liked it
Art was fun. But the book itself is confusing. The author didn't edit his story very well. We are lead to think that we are following a stray and then that he tells us how he used to be in the dojo and then got too fat to catch mice but there is never any transistion to tell us that he is either still a stray cat trying to get back with the sumo wrestlers or if he is sumo kitty. There is no transistion from a past rememberance story telling to the present.

I hope as the story ends with sumo kitty
Gwen Ayler
This was the perfect combination. I loved the story itself of the adorable kitty learning about perseverance but also loved all the little facts about Sumo Wrestling that I never even would have probably cared to learn but since it was presented in such a cute story with just the right amount of facts (too many would have probably made me stop reading early on) I was loving it.

Also loved those first 3 pages with different sayings and the explanations of what they mean. Some days you just need to
Nov 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Adorable! This picture book follows a black cat that is homeless and seeks refuge at a training center for sumo wrestlers. Taking food whenever he is hungry catches the attention of the center's manager, she gives him an ultimatum: leave, or rid the structure of mice. Taking this task as his primary job, he is rewarded and vastly becomes friends with the wrestlers. Eating so much and taking many naps, he neglects his duty and is chased off. With the encouragement and help from Kuma, he becomes ...more
Mar 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book is a great way to show young readers how to confront challenges and find your motivation to succeed. Through the adventures of a cat living in a heya in order to keep the mice away, Biedrzycki weaves in Japanese cultural terms with an adorable and relatable character who just wants to eat. I'll definitely be using this one with the kids I work with since it's such a well crafted blend of teaching and story that I'm sure they'll love.
Raven Black
Oct 21, 2019 rated it liked it
Cute book about a cat that shows the sumo wrestles a few tricks after they showed him how to be the best kitty he knows how to be. While a funny story, not sure it is going to get a reread by me. However, that perfectly quirky kid (and the quirky kid in the adults) will gobble it up like a sumokitty gobbles up noddles!
Jan 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing
My director got an advanced reader copy of this at ALA-Midwinter, and allowed some of the staff to read it. It's just about the cutest thing ever! The illustrations are fun and well-done, and the story was fun and engaging. We will definitely be adding this to our collection when it releases in August!
Aug 01, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: arc, edelweiss
Note: I accessed a digital review copy of this book through Edelweiss.

I really expected to like this book more than I did. I’m a cat lover and the cover looked so fun and inviting. I didn’t expect the book to be so informative about Sumo wrestling. I guess that’s a good thing but it kind of took away from the story for me.
Marg Corjay
Sep 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A fun-filled picture book to read together with children. Some help may be needed with the wrestling terms, but it is informative and the story is fast-paced enough to hold a child's attention. The illustrations are detailed and sooo cute, they brim with emotions throughout. This is a wonderful way to introduce a child to an important aspect of another culture.
Oct 19, 2019 rated it liked it
Caught stealing food at the heya (training center), a hungry, stray kitty is told he can stay if he will keep the mice away. The kitty eats and sleep and eats and sleep. “Life was good in the heya. We were one big, happy family until I noticed ...” The mice return! And he can no longer catch them. Will he lose his home?

The illustrations of Sumokitty are hilarious.
Jun 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I got an early reader copy at BEA, and to be honest and to my shame, I didn’t think much of it at first.
But now I’ve read it and this is the cutest thing I’ve ever seen I want to hug that cat!

The illustration is just gorgeous and the fun narration mixes beautifully with it.

Not to be dramatic but I would die for that cat.
Miss Ryoko
Sep 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I really really loved this book. It might have a lot to do with the fact that SumoKitty looks a lot like my foster cat Edison (their shape is nearly the exact same) - but also, the story was really great and sweet. The illustrations are fantastic and I loved all the Japanese words in the story. Great work Mr. Biedrzycki!
T.E. Antonino
Nov 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I really liked this picture book. The illustrations aren't just cute, but they also tell the story really well. Throughout the book there were Japanese words. The author helps the children by sounding out the pronunciation of the Japanese words. This book is definitely worth giving a whirl. Happy Reading.
Juliana Lee
Kitty was skinny and homeless, but he found a home in a heya (training center) with a trio of sumo wrestlers and plenty of food! He only had one job, to keep the mice away. But the more he ate, the less he moved and the less he caught mice. He was kicked out of the heya until Kuma (who was terrified of mice) let him back in. He trained and learned lessons, and soon he was named Sumokitty!
May 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Absolutely ADORABLE!! I love how the author used the book to teach a different language.. and how the pics illustrated exactly what was going on! A good message too! How if one becomes complacent something else will move in.. and take over. Happy ending!
Apr 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
The moral of the story is right at the beginning, and then through the characters' journeys, we learn how this lesson comes to life. An exciting text to add to a character or literary theme study.
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In his early years David created stories for his parents and friends. A commercial artist since 1980, his work has appeared in magazines, newspapers, book covers, billboards and even ice cream boxes. The supermarket is like a gallery of his work.

Now he has now returned to his first love of picture book storytelling. He has illustrated close to 30 books including self-authored and award winning Ace
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