A quirky parable about the power of books and how we should identify and funnel that power. The novel is targeted at adults even though the central character is a talking cat called Tiger. A clever cat though. Unfortunately, only a select few people can see him.
The story is told from the perspective of a boy whose grandfather has died. He struggles to come to terms with this event as his grandfather was his carer so his life will be changed completely and plans are that he goes to live with his aunt. His grandfather was also the owner of a small second-hand bookshop, which now becomes the boy's.
The cat's role is to take the boy to three labyrinths to discuss the various interpretations of the power and value of books. It is a thought provoking read although, if targeted at adults as the publishers claim, the discussions could have had more depth and took on a more philosophical debate. Interesting nonetheless, the novel can be enjoyed by younger readers. The boy's journey sees him increase in confidence and gives his life focus and purpose.
I didn't quite get the tingle of the fantasy worlds as they were described but perhaps some of the magic is lost in translation. However, this is a lovely and original book well worth reading.
Published by Picador on 16 September 2021.
Advanced review copy supplied by the publisher.