When I started reading, I had forgotten all about it and assumed it was an indie book. It seemed perhaps a little simplistic and at the start I could tell the male point-of-view character was written by a woman. Other than that, it was kind of a sweet read, definitely entertaining in an airplane.
So then when I looked at home I realized it won a Newberry Medal in the 1960s as a children's book. Ah well.
My main complaint is that the cat initially draws the reader in, but by the end of the story the cat seems insignificant. The author even reminds the reader that everything happened because of the cat, but I feel like if you need reminded, the story hasn't done its job.
Obviously it's a good story, though, what with the Newberry and all. It's kind of funny how even a self-published author would mentally criticize something they thought was an "indie" book. Though in fairness, I was at a writing panel at Tus-Con one year and the group of writers, led by an author/panelist, figured out how we could improve the opening paragraphs of Dune. So I think it's more my writer's editing tendencies than it is judging a book because of my perceptions of the author.