Ottoline and the Yellow Cat


Chris Riddell


Fantasy / Science Fiction


Date Reviewed:

April 5, 2022

ttoline and the Yellow Cat is a kid's book. I am officially a senior citizen. Yet I loved every page of this book! It is both written and illustrated by Chris Riddell, and I can tell that he had tremendous fun creating this book. I know I was grinning with delight as I turned each page. It is a fun story, with a tiny bit of mystery, some eccentric characters, and absolutely marvelous artwork. Riddell lavishes his art upon this book, there is a pen and ink drawing on almost every page; some of the drawings are embellished with spots of bright red color. If you type "ottoline yellow cat images" into a search engine, you can see some of these excellent drawings yourself. I say this art is equal to the classic Alice in Wonderland drawings of John Tenniel, or the Winnie the Pooh illustrations of Ernest Shepard - Riddell's artwork is that special!

Ottoline lives in apartment 243 of the Pepperpot Building. Her parents, Professor Brown and Professor Brown, are always away on trips to exotic locations (though they frequently send humorous postcards), but Ottoline does not live alone. Mr. Munroe lives with her. Mr. Munroe is a hairy creatures that Ottoline's parents found living in a bog in Norway, so they put him on a ship and sent him home. Together, Ottoline and Mr. Munroe solve mysteries - it helps that Ottoline is a Mistress of Disguise (she has a diploma from Who-R-U Academy of Subterfuge) - and right now police are baffled by a series of jewelry heists. Ottoline studies the stories in the newspaper, and then thoughtfully makes a plan.

Also living the Pepperpot Building is a bear that decided hiding in the laundry room would be a better spot than hiberating in a cold cave. The bear becomes Ottoline's ally in her scheme to catch the crooks.

This is a gentle story, nothing traumatic that would frighten a young child. The artwork is a delight to study, and it is terrific that the artwork is so profuse. Some of the artwork fills the entire page. Riddell must have really enjoyed working on this book, because there is a lot detail and cleverness in the pictures.

I see that there are three more Ottoline stories, and I intend to read them all. I also see that Riddell has another series called Goth Girl, so I will check those books out as well. This book is highly recommended for all age groups.