Top critical review
Two cats and a tiger
on 18 December 2014
Gosh, I yield to no one in my admiration for Kerr's (pronounced Carr's) work, but as for the veneration in which she is held, perish the thought, but could it be at least in part because she is a woman of venerable age, an immigrant (or emigree as used to be said, implying something done TO you rather than something you did) and one of Hitler's persecuted Jews? Would that Kathleen Hale had received the same treatment! Too niche? Or maybe there were copyright difficulties. Partly because of the simplified vocabulary she adopted, taking the somewhat dumbed-down Theodor Seuss Geisel as her model, and partly because of her rather Mr Benn-like drawing style* (that very untigerlike tiger, who's fully as bulbous as Comical Mog the Unfit House-cat!) Kerr's is the lesser talent, but she holds a place in many a heart. A sprightly 90 at publication (Orlando's progenitor was older when she wrote her own memoir, and sailed statelily on to 102) Kerr probably deserved this celebratory wallow, though its ungainly coffee-table (or lectern) size was uncalled for and I suspect few are going to read all of the words
* though she doesn't have the cloying quality of Helen Oxenbury, another stalwart whom I love, BUT..