Also, in case you need some more convincing, Cat & Mouse has been chosen as one of the New York Public Library's 100 Titles for Reading and Sharing for 2008.
And, speaking of the New York Public Library, here's what Elizabeth Bird (see my previous post) wrote on her blog about Cat & Mouse after she saw the original illustrations (and my reference photos) last fall:
I adore intricacy. I love it when an artist has the ability to use delicate little pen lines to convey a character or scene. In Mr. Schoenherr's case, there were photographs of cats accompanying the art. The cat in the book itself obviously owes its very existence to these very real felines, and I'm looking forward to the publication of the book. It's a picture book that utilizes a variety of different cat and mouse nursery rhymes (like Hickory Dickory Dock) and turns them into a single story. Quite clever, really.
When Ms. Bird finally got to see a copy of the finished book, she wrote :
Ian Schoenherr's Cat and Mouse is an interesting one to keep an eye on too. With the teeniest brushstrokes imaginable, Schoenherr brings to life a cat and a mouse alongside three classic nursery rhymes. What's more, he's somehow able to make a coherent story out of the lot. I'm a cat person myself, so I was particularly partial to the kitty in this book, delicate stripes and all.
For the record, here's a picture of Pistachio - the chief model for the "Cat". He looks somewhat imperious here - or as if I had just wounded his dignity.