'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Sunday 25 June 2017

Review: The Adventures of Pelle No-Tail Book 1

The story of Pelle Svanslos, as he is known in Sweden, is translated for the first time from Swedish to English by Stephanie Smee and Ann-Margrete Smee for new generations of young readers. 

A Swedish classic children’s book in the class of Pippi Longstocking, Pelle Svanslos (the surname translates to No-Tail in English) was first published in 1939. Young readers will be delighted and entertained by the adventures of this courageous cat, and his positive outlook on life.

Pelle is a farm cat robbed of his tail by a rat when he was very young. At seven weeks old, he leaves the farm under the most unexpected circumstances. He jumps into the back seat of a car whose door is left ajar and ends up in the city. There he is adopted by the car owner’s family, but he becomes the darling of little Birgitta.

This advancement is a life-changing experience for Pelle. A trip to the country during summer holidays teaches him a lot about others, no matter whom and what they are. His meeting with the nasty bully cat Mans, Kalle the Snake whom Pelle thinks is a tail without a cat, and Big Stina, all have an influence on Pelle’s new life. 

This brilliant tale of adjusting to new circumstances, the longing to belong, and be loved, and the sacrifices made to that end even when you’re a cat, build a fantastic adventure story.

The language stays true to the story’s origins. Some Swedish words are used to maintain originality. The whole book focuses on Pelle, who is faced with many challenges, but always comes up trumps.

I loved this book which is the first of a long series, and look forward to the next in the series, Further Adventures of Pelle No-Tail, available in July. I know this will be a winner and I foresee a great following for this wonderful character and his exciting adventures.

Title: The Adventures of Pelle No-Tail Book 1
Author: Gosta Knutsson
Illustrator: Lovisa Lesse
Publisher: Black Inc Books, $14.99
Publication Date: June 2017
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9781863959247
For ages: 6+
Type: Junior Fiction