The Nine Lives of Furry Purry Beancat, The Railway Cat by Philip Ardagh

Illustrated by Rob Biddulph.

Published by Simon & Schuster, 2020.

Furry Purry Beancat is an extraordinary cat because after one of her special cat-naps she wakes to find herself somewhere completely different. Each time (and in each book of this series) waking up in another of her nine lives. In this story she wakes up on a railway platform and quickly gets adopted by Mr Robinson, the station master.

She arrives right in the middle of the action – a handbag is snatched from wealthy Mrs Fitzpatrick and young Charlie Gruff, an urchin, is the culprit. However, he’s been put up to it by someone else and there is something much more sinister at play. Before long, Beancat and the station master’s granddaughter Polly are playing detectives, following leads and trying to solve a mystery.  

The story is illustrated throughout by Rob Biddulph and he’s really brought all the characters to life. His cartoon-esque style is great fun and the character’s faces are full of expression. The book is set in Victorian times and has lots of interesting period detail, both in the illustrations and in the story itself.

Furry Purry Beancat is extremely readable and very enjoyable. It would suit newly confident readers, and I could see it being successfully serialised as a class novel in Year 3 or 4.

Rating: 💙💙💙💙

Suitable for children aged 6+.

I originally reviewed this book for the BooksforTopics website. Thank you to Simon & Schuster and BooksforTopics for sending me this book to review.

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