Dianne Hofmeyer and Piet Grobler
Unlike the rest of her large family and many friends, there’s one Parisian Cat that wants to see more of the world than her smelly back-alley home.
So, one wet night she enters a busy café where singer Edith Piaf, is entertaining the customers. Cat decides to do likewise
but is soon sent packing.
Back out in the rain she finds refuge in a dressmaking atelier.
Once again Cat decides “I can do that,” and as soon as the establishment has closed, she gathers up all the fabric offcuts and fashions herself a sparkly dress, dons her new attire and heads to a nightclub.
There she sees Josephine Baker dancing along with a cheetah. Yet again Cat decides, “Pffh! I can do that” and up onto the stage she springs to show her own moves.
Chiquita the cheetah is impressed, so much so that ‘Kitty’ is invited back to dance again the following evening alongside Josephine.
So it is that every night, clad in a new outfit, courtesy of the snippets from Madame Delphine’s atelier, she dances the night away, becoming a regular part of the billed act.
Eventually Cat starts to miss her family and friends. This prompts her to open her very own nightclub – Madame Kitty’s Catacombs Club so that she can see them all regularly again.
Now it’s not just one, but many cats that, if you happen to be in the vicinity after dark, you might see dancing the night away, clad thanks to Madame Kitty, in their snazzy outfits.
And Madame Kitty? She may be there too, or perhaps another new adventure has lured her away.
I absolutely love Piet Grobler’s scratchy scenes of 1920s Paris nightlife that really bring to life Dianne Hofmeyer’s deliciously quirky tale of searching for the new, pursuing your dreams, but not forgetting where you came from. I love too, the way the author has woven into her narrative the two stars from that era both of whom had difficult early lives.