Let’s Pretend You’re a Cat
Let’s Pretend You’re a CatHelena Dahlbäck, illustrated by Charlotte Ramel
What happens when children are allowed to play on their own? Here we have three brothers and sisters who close the nursery door behind them. Big Sister and Middle Child draw Little Brother into a game that winds and twists its way beyond the confines of time and space.
Everything that seems interesting and exciting from the perspective of a small child is tried and tested in the game. There are accidents and fires, and the children play roles such as a nurse, a foundling child, a vet, a prince and a cat. The roles are quickly allocated, and Little Brother always has to be what his sisters decide he should be. One minute he is being taken care of with gentle kindness, the next minute the treatment is a little more brusque. But everything is just pretend after all, and when Little Brother refuses to play the stupid prince any more, the game is over. Everything goes back to normal, and they go into the kitchen where a real mummy and daddy are eating a perfectly ordinary breakfast.
The imaginative text is illustrated in a wonderfully innovative way: the cartoon format captures the rapid allocation of roles and the smooth shift between play and reality, while large, full-page pictures show the children absorbed in their game. The late author did not have the opportunity to experience how wonderful this book eventually became, after many years’ work. But we have that opportunity! Many children and their parents will recognise themselves in this exciting, entertaining story which takes children and their games very seriously, and they will thoroughly enjoy it.
Lasten Parhaat/Finnish Tammi/Kirjat