cover image Mr. Mistoffelees; With, Mungojerrie and Rumpelteazer

Mr. Mistoffelees; With, Mungojerrie and Rumpelteazer

T. S. Eliot. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt P, $13.95 (28pp) ISBN 978-0-15-256230-4

Published posthumously, Le Cain's ( Growltiger's Last Stand & Other Poems ) last book proves a rousing finale. Mr. Mistoffelees, the magical conjuring cat, is among the liveliest and most winsome of all of Eliot's felines. As rendered here, he is a majestic and beguiling figure indeed, with Cheshire-like, glinting eyes, a playing-card collar, a magnificent midnight-blue cape displaying the moon and stars and an irresistible aura of intrigue, cunning and self-satisfaction. The cat-burglars Mungojerrie and Rumpelteazer provide a fitting second act, ingenious and even mysterious in their own rough-and-tumble way. Throughout, Le Cain not only captures a wondrous range of expressions but indulges his considerable fancy for extravagant, whimsical patterns. The result is a visually rich book that celebrates Eliot's verbal acrobatics and contributes a few capers of its own. All ages. (Mar.)