Big Cat

Big Cat

3+ Readers Picture Books
Author: Emma Lazell
ISBN: 9781843654018
Publication date: 4th April 2019
Publisher: Pavilion Children's Books an imprint of Pavilion Books
Format: Paperback
Pagination: 32 pages

Our View on Big Cat

An ebullient debut picture book with a great twist which young readers will love spotting as the story unfolds. When Grandma loses her glasses, Isobel sets about helping her to find them.  Searching in the garden they find a very big cat… Grandma loves cats and she is always taking in strays. Without her glasses she can’t really see just how big a bundle of orange fur that this new cat is! Nor can she work out why so much cat food is getting eaten. Young readers will spot that she is reading a story about a tiger which is probably very familiar to them. And they will realise that this cat is actually very closely related to the two tigers who come looking for it!  Bold cats in strong colours are at the heart of this great story.

Find colouring in and puzzle pages in this Big Cat Activity Pack - download here!

Julia Eccleshare M.B.E

About Big Cat

Isobel's grandma has lost her glasses and she can't see a thing without them. While Isobel and Gran are in the garden searching for the specs, they come across a cat. A very big cat. A very big and friendly cat. The big cat moves in with them, much to the disgust of all gran's other cats. He might be good fun, but he takes up lots of space and eats every scrap of food. Eventually the new cat's mum and dad turn up, looking for their missing son. And they just happen to have found gran's glasses too. The tiger family are delighted to be reunited - and gran now sees that she's been sharing her house with... a tiger!

Emma Lazell, a recent graduate of the Cambridge School of Art, has been tipped as a rising star by The Bookseller, and was one of only eight illustrators selected for the magazine’s Bologna 2018 Illustrator showcase.

Reviews (8)

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Kingsfleet School

I read this book to my class of 29 Reception children. They were totally engrossed from the word go just by the front cover.

Lots of shouts of, "There they are!" when they could see Grandma's glasses. As the story progressed, there were lots of giggles and they thought it was really funny that the 'big cat' was reading The Tiger Who Came for Dinner. When asked at the end who enjoyed the book, all 29 hands went up.

For me, as a teacher, the pictures were bright and there were lots of opportunities for me to change my voice and to use lots of expressions, which will hopefully encourage the children to do the same when they read.
A thoroughly enjoyable book.

Scott-Sentance family

We all loved this book and its vibrant illustrations. We had a good giggle over the funny cat names ("Hufflystink" and "Gertrude" were particular favourites) and spotting Grandma's various cats on every page. The little placards were inventive and we loved reading the cat complaints -- especially "More fish?"! The "big cat" was adorable and we loved the moment when Grandma discovers what her new cat REALLY is! We also loved the funny ending with the elephant trunk just edging into view. This is a book that's bursting with colour, fun and expressiveness!

Abidah and Amatullah Khatun - Age 3 and 9

Big Cat by Emma Lazell is like a fresh, funny new take on The Tiger Who Came to Tea. Isobel's grandmother has lost her glasses and this is when all the trouble (and fun) begins! They find a cat although he's not your usual variety of house cat.

The lovely, colourful illustrations are quirky and eye-catching and compliment the funny story. Older readers like my daughter Amatullah will catch the subtle clues in the pictures. Abidah loved this story because it was about animals and even an elephant (her favourite animal) made an appearance in the end.

Milo Jones - Age 3

Grandma couldn't find her glasses and the little girl found a big cat in the garden. The big cat ate all the food, read a newspaper and had a bath and the other cats were jealous. When Grandma did find her glasses she could see the big cat was really a tiger! My best bits were the other funny cats and all the tigers sitting eating their food. It was really funny at the end when Grandma spotted an elephant!

Sarah (Mum): My 3-year-old son loved this story! The bright and colourful pictures had lots of interesting detail for him to look at and explore. He instantly understood and engaged with the story and found it so funny. This will definitely become a family favourite!

Ares Yow-Fairs - Age 5

I really like this book. I liked the cat on the laundry line. I liked how they turned the Mona Lisa into a cat. I recommend this book to cat and tiger lovers.

Fern Tolley

There’s something about tigers in picture books that always make them a winner! Because just like Judith Kerr’s classic, The Tiger Who Came to Tea, and Lizzy Stewart’s enchanting There’s a Tiger in my Garden, Emma Lazell’s new picture book Big Cat is a must read!

This heart-warmingly, hilarious picture book tells the story of Isobel and her Grandma, some lost specs and a very big cat..! The fun and chaos makes for a brilliant twist which young readers will love, but Lazell also shares a charming underlying message of family, acceptance and finding new friends. And not to mention Lazell’s bright and bold illustrations make this a book any child will pull from a shelf and want to keep forever. A classic in the making.

Cath Richardson

Big Cat is a beautifully illustrated book that will appeal to readers from age 3 to 6. It tells the story of Grandma who takes in a stray cat only to discover he is not what she thought! This is a story that children will love from start to finish as the characters and setting are familiar and it is laden with humour. Grandma's pet cats do not take to their new visitor very well and the illustrations showing their facial expressions and their comments on banners add an extra hilarious dimension to the story.
There is so much to talk about throughout this story and so many opportunities for predicting what might come next as you turn the pages. Children won't fail to miss the humour as the tiger in the book reads A Tiger Came to tea. Each illustration is so detailed that each time you read it, you will spot something different to talk about. A book that should be in every child's home and that will surely become a classic!

Sarah Ormes

Cat loving Grandma is delighted to find a lost big cat in her garden but unfortunately she has lost her glasses and doesn't realise that her new pet is actually a tiger. This is a great picture book and all the classes I read it to fully engaged with it. The illustrations are bright and bold with a slightly retro 1970s style and the story is well told. We all enjoyed looking at the clever pictures, for example cat versions of the Mona Lisa hang on Grandma's wall and I particularly enjoyed the cat Mondrian. There are witty touches that will definitely make reading this book aloud over and over again a pleasure for both adults and children. A brilliant debut by Emma Lazell and fully recommended by me and 90 year 1/2 children!

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