Monday, January 10, 2022

Review: Catwings by Ursula K. Le Guin

Mrs Jane Tabby could not explain why all four of her children had wings.

"I suppose their father was a fly-by-night," a neighbour said, and laughed unpleasantly, sneaking round the dumpster."

"Maybe they have wings because I dream, before they were born, that I could fly away from this neighbourhood," said Mrs Jane Tabby.

I loved this little tale. So much fun Ursula Le Guin-style social commentary woven into a really cute story about kittens with wings. Not a word nor a sentence out of place.

I liked best the outrage of the birds at discovering cats that dared ascend into their ranks (and the lack of sympathy felt by the mouse towards the birds
— "you could try tunnels").

Insofar as books about animals leaving their homes in search of a better life elsewhere go, this one is so much better than Watership Down — from a narrative perspective, from an allegorical perspective, from a feminist/not-misogynist perspective that I can't believe anyone bothers reading the latter.

The fish in the creek said nothing. Fish never do. Few people know what fish think about injustice, or anything else.

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