Skip to main content Skip to search Skip to search

Children's Fiction Cats

Mr. King's Machine

illustrated by Genevieve Cote

Kids Can Press
Initial publish date
Apr 2016
Cats, Humorous Stories, Environment
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Apr 2016
    List Price

Add it to your shelf

Where to buy it

Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels

  • Age: 3 to 7
  • Grade: p to 2
  • Reading age: 3 to 7


When Mr. King the cat discovers that one of the pretty flowers near his home has been chewed by a caterpillar, he is NOT happy. He decides to build himself a Caterpillar-Catcher to track down the culprit who did it. “VOOM! VOOM! VOOM!” But as he speeds up and down the hillsides, Mr. King doesn't notice that the Caterpillar-Catcher is spewing nasty smoke into the air and knocking down the other pretty flowers in his path. Now it's his animal friends who are NOT happy. They explain to Mr. King that his machine is making things worse, not better. And why chase a caterpillar anyway? Caterpillars turn into butterflies, and butterflies help the flowers to grow! Will Mr. King be able to turn things around so everyone will be happy again?

This is the third book in Geneviève Côté's wonderful picture book series about a crown-wearing cat who always needs a little help from his friends to learn important environmental lessons. With bright and colorful illustrations, this engaging, charming book makes an entertaining read-aloud. This story shows that, as in the real world, there can be unintended consequences to well-meaning actions, and it provides a starting point for discussions on the interdependency of all things in nature. It might also prompt a conversation about how creativity can inspire us to make our community a nicer place --- maybe even sparking a classroom flower-seed-planting project. This is also a sweet lesson on how friends can help us to better understand ourselves and our world.

About the author



Enfant, Geneviève Côté adorait dessiner. Elle s'inventait des histoires simplement pour le plaisir de les illustrer. Au fil des ans, elle a continué à nourrir sa passion pour le dessin et les arts, si bien qu'elle a décidé d'en faire une carrière. Après avoir étudié les arts et la communication au Cégep, elle a terminé, en 1987, un baccalauréat en infographie à l'Université Concordia, à Montréal. Geneviève a illustré plus de 25 livres pour enfants. Comme auteure-illustratrice, elle a publié chez Scholastic Quel éléphant? et Je suis là, Petit Lundi. Elle a reçu le Prix du Gouverneur général pour ses illustrations en 2007. Geneviève vit à Montréal et travaille dans un atelier du centre-ville.


Geneviève Côté
studied art and graphic design at Concordia University in Montreal. She has
illustrated numerous books for children. She also enjoys writing her own
stories: Quel éléphant? (What Elephant?) and Je suis là, petit Lundi (With You Always, Little Monday)
were the first books that she both wrote and illustrated. Côté's editorial
art has appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Boston Globe and other
publications. Her books have received three nominations for the Governor
General's Award for Illustration, one of which she went on to win. She has
also won the Elizabeth Mrazik-Cleaver Award.


Genevieve Cote's profile page


  • Unknown, Green Earth Book Award, The Nature Generation

Editorial Reviews

... delightful illustrations and a straightforward message about being mindful of the earth and respecting the creatures who inhabit it.—CM Magazine

Environmentalism for the nursery.—Kirkus Reviews, starred review

A nice lesson about the importance of considering consequences.—Booklist

Add this title to any collection looking for books on community, cooperation, and the environment.—School Library Journal

Other titles by Genevieve Cote