The Little War Cat is the beautifully illustrated story of a cat whose world is turned upside down when war comes to Aleppo. It’s a story of hope which was inspired by the experiences of Mohammad Alaa Aljaleel, The Cat Man of Aleppo, who works tirelessly to help animals and people affected by the Syrian conflict.
The Story: A little grey cat has a good life playing and sunbathing. But everything changes when soldiers arrive. Shops close, familiar streets are no longer safe and she is hungry and scared. One day the cat sees a kind man and follows him home to discover that he’s looking after stray cats. The little cat is wary but encouraged by the kind man she settles into a new home. And when she discovers a young boy hiding she is able to replicate the kindness that the cat man showed to her.
The Little War Cat shows that even in the darkest, difficult times we can still receive and offer the hand of friendship. The cat finds security with the kind man and we love the way that her experience with him inspires her to help another scared stranger.
Laura Chamberlain’s beautiful pastel coloured illustrations complement the easy to read text. Warm sunshine and blue skies are mirrored at the beginning and end of the story…
Further into the story the illustrations get darker and we love the use of imagery, soldiers aren’t named but described as humans in big noisy boots.
The Little War Cat can be used to stimulate conversations about the plight and suffering that war can bring to animals as well as humans. The Cat Man of Aleppo is a true hero, bravely helping others in need, and this story is a great way to introduce young readers to a real life hero through the eyes of a fictional character.
Author: Hiba Noor Khan / Illustrator: Laura Chamberlain
Thank you to Macmillan Children’s Books for sending us a review copy of this hopeful and inspiring story.
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