Reviews /

Where is the Cat?

Authored by Eva Eland
Illustrated by Eva Eland
Published by Andersen Press Ltd

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Where is the Cat? by award winning author and illustrator Eva Eland is a must-have book for any child who has encountered a cat that does not want to play. As I read this for the first time, I was reminded of my grandparent’s cat, Heather, who I would only ever see a fleeting glimpse of as she dashed to hide herself behind the sofa as soon as visitors entered the room. There she would stay for the duration of a visit until peace returned and she could seek out the safety of my nan’s lap. Cats have an uncanny ability to work out that someone wants their company and therefore to keep as far away as possible.

The endpapers set the tone beautifully for the story with a series of illustrations of the cat hiding in different places. Cat has a good life with Auntie apart from the days that her niece Suzy comes to visit. She loudly asks, ‘Where is the cat?’ before playing a very one-sided game of hide and seek. Cat does not want to play by Suzy’s anguish causes cat to feel sympathy, although not enough to make Cat want to dress up or play Mummy and baby. In fact, it is when Suzy stops looking that Cat can be found.

This is a delightful picturebook which many young readers will empathise with. Suzy expresses her sadness that Cat doesn’t like her but she learns that Cat just doesn’t want to play her games. The glorious eye-popping neon colour palette is so appealing without being overwhelming. There are spotting opportunities on each page – ideal for young readers to engage with the book. I would highly recommend Where is the Cat? particularly for Early Years classrooms. It could be shared with a small group of children enabling them to spend time spotting Cat or read to a whole class.