We have changed our privacy policy. In addition, we use cookies on our website for various purposes. By continuing on our website, you consent to our use of cookies. You can learn about our practices by reading our privacy policy.
© 2016 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.
The Cat in the Hat Comes Back

The Cat in the Hat Comes Back


by Dr. Seuss

The Cat in the Hat Comes Back Introduction

In A Nutshell

If you remember our dear old friend Cat,
You'll be happy to know he's still wearing his hat,
The contents of which are soon to be known.
We'll give you a hint: Cat's not on his own!

Our main man still thinks that Cat's up to no good.
When The Cat in the Hat Comes Back to their 'hood.
But too bad, Somebody, this Cat's here to stay.
He's brought oodles and froodles of friends to the fray.

The boy and sis, Sally, they just want to clean.
They're sure the Cat's mess-making's terribly mean.
But the Cat in the Hat has a trick or two yet,
And he'll clean the whole house—we're sure! (Wanna bet?)

See, the Cat's never frazzled, he's never stressed out.
He likes to have fun! And be up! And about!
And with all of the cats, lettered A, B through Z,
He makes cleaning a pinch; it's oh-so-easy!

But here's the thing, Shmoopers, it's never just fun
When it comes to Doc Seuss (though fun's #1).
If you start to look closely at those pinkinsh stains,
You might just start thinking 'bout communist pains.

Back in the day, 1958,
Cold War was a brewin' in the U.S. of A.
So keep your eyes open for nuclear talk,
But don't let it ruin your rhyme-y ol' walk.


Why Should I Care?

At first glance, The Cat in the Hat Comes Back seems like a terrible book to be sharing with your kids. We mean, here's a character who runs around wantonly grabbing anything he can get his grubby paws on and staining it all. What is this, an episode of True Life: I Have Impulse Control and Cleanliness Issues?

But when you look closely, this book teaches some valuable lessons. Most notably, it shows kids the importance of hard work, even when things seem crazy and completely out of their control. After all, the narrator's about to give up on everything when the Cat in the Hat shows him that with a little bit of elbow grease (and a little help from your friends), you can make the impossible possible.

Also, if your kid is of the Dennis the Menace variety, then it can't be bad to read a book where the characters are literally cleaning up the entire time, right?


Why Your Kids Should Care

Being a kid is tough.

You might not think so when you see them getting pushed around in strollers and given candy for free, but life as a child can be totally overwhelming. These little 'uns have no control over their lives, and it can sometimes just be a lot to deal with.

That's how the narrator feels in The Cat in the Hat Comes Back. After all, he has to deal with shoveling all the snow from the driveway (come on, Mom!) and an unexpected houseguest who keeps making a mess. It's just too much to handle.

But will prove to your kids that, even when situations seem desperate, if you start getting to work on them, you'll find that they might be a whole lot easier than you thought. Just like Sally, the Cat, and the rest of the gang are able to clean up all that Catty mess.

At the end of the day, kids have some superhero powers of their own—determination and an insane imagination, anyone? We think they'll be just fine.

People who Shmooped this also Shmooped...