A Cat Story

Ursula Murray Husted. HarperAlley and Quill Tree, $22.99 (192p) ISBN 978-0-0629-3204-4
Stray cats wander Malta and lead mundane and monotonous lives in this graphic novel, stealing scraps and lazing about before retiring to an alley for the night. While Betto, a perpetually hungry tan cat, remains more than content with this life, Cilla, a white cat with black spots, decides to hunt for a mythical quiet garden, where cats’ tails are never stepped on, bellies are always full, and bodies are always safe and warm. Betto decides he can’t let Cilla travel alone, and the two journey across buses, boats, and a cantankerous sea en route to the quiet island garden, where they must ask “the right questions” to gain entrance. Throughout, various cats that the duo encounters relate stories they’ve heard—as when an elderly feline divulges information about the garden—via renditions of classic art (listed in the back matter) that showcase the creator’s versatility. Husted’s debut captures picturesque Mediterranean landscapes, and thin line art highlights the scrawny strength and fragility of the feline strays. Full of fun and whimsy, the story also reminds a heartfelt truth: “scraps aren’t so bad when you have a friend to share them with.” Ages 8–12. Agent: Judith Hansen, Hansen Literary Management. (Oct.)
Reviewed on : 11/12/2020
Release date: 10/06/2020
Genre: Children's
Hardcover - 192 pages - 978-0-06-293205-1
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