Last book of the Catwings series– how I wish there were more! This one is more of your standard little adventure story, without the subtle psychological heartstrings of Wonderful Alexander. Here we see that Jane growing up, and pushing at boundaries. She’s full of spunk and wants something to happen, life on the farm is just too quiet and dull. So she flies off to find something exciting. She’s well aware of the warnings the older catwings have always given her: stay away from people, they’ll put you in a zoo or a cage- only the kids at our farm can be trusted. Jane reaches the city and when nothing bad happens at first, she becomes overconfident and foolishly flies in an open apartment window. The man there is shocked at first, to say the least. But he doesn’t hurt her, or put her behind bars, and he gives her food. She doesn’t notice at first that he shuts the window and never lets her out. She’s happy for a while. But then gradually things become oppressive- more and more people come to see her, cameras and flashing lights, and she’s coerced into doing tricks. She wants her freedom again- but how will she get it? and then where will she go? In the end, Jane manages to escape (I love the illustration on that page, you can barely see her sneaking out) and finds a place where she really belongs. The ending is quite satisfying.
I think I would shelve these Catwings books next to Beatrix Potter’s stories in my mind. They have a different tone, but the smallness of them, their compact perfectly-told stories with solid messages and observations on character, so deftly woven into the narrative you hardly notice it, are very alike. Not to mention the quality of the illustrations. Definitely ones that will stay in my collection forever.
Oh these three sound so sweet! I loved the original one, glad you were able to get these three.