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The Grand Escape (Cat Pack #1)

4.11  ·  Rating details ·  581 Ratings  ·  46 Reviews
Marco and Polo might have been content to stay house cats forever. But Marco has read all about ranches and decides he must find one, while Polo longs to find the mother he barely remembers. And then Mr. Neal leaves the side door open by mistake! Now, after their Grand Escape to the outside world, their lives are full of challenges and opportunities they never imagined. Th ...more
Paperback, 160 pages
Published October 1st 1994 by Yearling (first published 1993)
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Dec 16, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011
Two brother cats decide they are tired of being indoor cats and escape to look for that wonderful place called a ranch. On the way, they meet a group of cats living in the loft of a garage, leading the brother cats to a series of adventures. The Grand Escape is light-hearted fun, clearly written for younger readers. The story is told from the cats' perspective and while there is plenty of danger, fairy-tale happiness rules over reality.

Although I enjoyed the story, as an adult, the plot was a b
Jan 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I remember reading this when I was ten years old. I loved it, and thought that Naylor did a great job of portraying cats as they see themselves. you never think about an animal's perspective until you read or watch a story like this. I read Carlotta's Kittens a few years later, and I need to go back and read them all. it was a great book for me because I have always had cats, and I love the personification of animals in fiction.
Feb 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was my absolute favorite book as a younger girl. I found it the other day while cleaning, and I swooned. I can remember reading it with my mom, and then again by myself many times. It's adorable. It is a must-read for any cat lovers, is witty, and is an absolute delight for any child, in my opinion.
McKenzie Austin
May 17, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm personally new to GoodReads and therefore decided to start reviewing books I've read in childhood before I ventured on to the ones I read as an adult. It went without saying that I had to start with The Grand Escape.

When I was ten years old, I must have read this book so many times, the pages begged for reprieve. I even read it again in adulthood, just to touch that sweet nostalgia.

I thought Phyllis did an amazing job of bringing a cat's personality to life. The bond shared between the bro
Jan 02, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people in grade 4-6 maybe?
Recommended to Anna by: nobody, i found it on my own
I picked this up rather randomly at the library because the idea made me grin. I read it in a whole afternoon, so it's not long, but not too short either.

In this book: Two brother cats, Marco and Polo, used to live at home, but as life went on, they became restless. Eventually, they escape the house and realize the world is a big and scary place. To join a special cat pack, they have to go and complete 3 quests; all of which are dangerous for a cat.

I hope you like it like I did. :) It was cute.
Becky Combs
Jul 12, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am cleaning out. Yes, even books. I found this children's book I had not read before. It is a delightful tale of 2 brother house cats who want to go Outside. They do, and they have a big adventure. Sweet story.
Jun 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of my favorite books as a child!
Mar 09, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: childrens-books
This was very cute and funny - I really enjoyed how the cats interpreted the world, and humans.
Mar 07, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: readin2017
This was a childhood favorite that has stayed with me throughout the years. I was happy to discover it when cleaning out my old room. It wasn't quite as exciting to me as an adult (no, that's not a given), but it gets points for the fond memories. Plus, any cat-loving kid would love it just like I did, I'm sure.
Friend of Pixie (F.O.P.)
L is not quite ready for the popular Cat Warriors stories (a bit too tense), but this is a great lead-in to that. This series is about two tabby housecats named Marco and Polo who escape from their home and have some daring adventures in the bigger world. They want to join the local cat club, but to do so, they have to solve three mysteries, such as What Is Inside Betram-the-Bad's dog house (Bertram is a cat-chasing Mastiff). I found these fun to read aloud, seeing the world from the cat perspec ...more
Ashleigh Cutler
Jan 09, 2016 rated it really liked it
The first book of Marco and Polo's adventures is the best of the series. It jives well with Dick King-Smith's "The Mouse Butcher" as well. The characters are fun. You have Texas Jake, the top cat and somewhat of a bully to the boys yet kind to others. Carlotta, the calico who all the gang respect and try not to upset. "You have only one life," she tells the boys, "and once you lose it, no more cat." There's two more, Elvis the singer and Boots, who is more sidekick to T.J. than anything if I rem ...more
Taya S
Sep 30, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
I liked this book because it was about these two cats and they go on this adventure. So one day they sneek out of the house and they go to this restaraunt called the Big Burger. So when Marco and Polo go to a trash can these cats come along and Marco and this other cat start to get in a fight. So after the fight was over, Marco and Polo wait until they are done and they meet a new cat named Carlotta. So when they were done, they ate out of the trash cans and they had fish, ham burgers, cheese bu ...more
Ann Coleman
This is not a new book, but it was new to me. Cleverly written book about two house cats that decide to leave home to move to a ranch, though they weren't certain what a ranch was. One of the cats had cleverly slipped out for a short time when a door had been left open. Touching grass was a wild experience. Looking at birds from outside was so very different from the window's view.
When they make their heroic departure from their safe home they meet some interesting cats and oh what they see and
Oct 11, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A wonderful story about two cats, Marco and Polo, who escape from their comfortable life indoors. They begin an adventure as they meet some outdoor cats, and attempt to join a club presided over by Texas Jake. The characters and adventures they have along the way will have you laughing out loud! A great story for all cat lovers!
Jul 27, 2011 rated it liked it
A bit simple, and the characters are somewhat stereotypical...Alright for a kids book though personally I prefer ones where the cats actually interact with and appreciate humans instead of humans always being the big blundering oafs who just feed them.
King Haddock
I really enjoyed the Cat Pack books, very different in demeanor from the more-depressing Shiloh series Reynolds Naylor is known for. These are just silly, cute animal fiction books in which the cats discuss the questions of life and get everything wrong.
Aug 09, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: childrens
Oh, this is an adorable book about kitties, and their hunger for a new life all their own.... As a 7th grader, I found myself sympathizing with them all the way~ I always had a deep love and respect for animals (so much I fancied myself one most days >_<). It was such a cute read.
Molly G
Jul 10, 2009 rated it it was ok
A much-needed change of pace from the last few books I read. Wonderful characterizations of cats, portrayal of physicality seems exceptionally good in writing, as well as worldviews and understandings quite intelligently simple. Good use of naming the protagonists "Marco" and "Polo". Excellent YA.
May 01, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a childrens/young readers book, but it was one that really touched my heart as a child. If you're looking for a gift for a child in your life or if you'd just like to read a touching story, I highly recommend this book.
Dan Rogers
Read it because it's the assigned summer reading for my sixth graders. It was okay but certainly nothing to rave about.
Jun 29, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was one of my favorite books when I was growing up. I love the section where Naylor describes the cats going through the trash of the diner the first time.
May 14, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: adventure, friendship
Ahaha.... I pretty much forgot the storyline... but I LOVED it! <3
Jun 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I liked this book for how cleverly it's written. Seeing the world from these cats point of view is really funny.
Sep 08, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a cute story.
Jul 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The first real chapter book I ever picked out (January 1995!) and the book that made me fall in love with reading. Always love to revisit an old friend.
Oct 30, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Jan 15, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
they had just got to the dark alley and Marco had a fight with a huge cat named Texas Jake i believe, and just met a female cat that has the perfect life. Page 30
Apr 28, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It was an excellent book, it was very well written and it hooks you.
Jennifer Willson
Aug 26, 2012 rated it really liked it
One of the first books I remember reading, and being a cat person I loved the adventures of Marco and Polo :)
May 21, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
4 star story, but 5 stars for cats
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Phyllis Reynolds Naylor was born in Anderson, Indiana, US on January 4, 1933.

Her family were strongly religious with conservative, midwestern values and most of her childhood was spent moving a lot due to her father's occupation as a salesman.

Though she grew up during the Depression and her family did not have a lot of money, Naylor stated that she never felt poor because her family owned good boo
More about Phyllis Reynolds Naylor

Other books in the series

Cat Pack (4 books)
  • The Healing of Texas Jake (Cat Pack #2)
  • Carlotta's Kittens (Cat Pack #3)
  • Polo's Mother (Cat Pack #4)