Judith Kerr's next picture book based on author's ninth cat

Judith Kerr's next picture book based on author's ninth cat

HarperCollins has bought a new book from Judith Kerr, inspired by the 94-year-old author's ninth pet cat Katinka.

HarperCollins Children’s Books executive publisher, Ann-Janine Murtagh, bought the world rights to Katinka’s Tail, which will be published on 19th October in hardback.

It tells the story of a “perfectly ordinary cat with a not-so-ordinary tail” spanning between a forest and the moon. The publication comes 47 years after Mog the Forgetful Cat (HarperCollins Children's Books).

Murtagh said: “It’s an absolute joy and a privilege to publish Judith Kerr. She is a simply extraordinary picture book creator – the vitality of this new tale with its whimsical wit and beautifully observed illustrations of Katinka and her rather delightful owner sees Judith on absolutely top form.

She added: “I am quite simply over the moon with the wonder that she has delivered in Katinka’s Tail.”

The Berlin-born author said she was inspired by the “bizarre” nature of cats and in particular, Katinka’s appearance. She said: “She is a ridiculous- looking white cat with a tabby tail that looks as though it belonged to somebody else.”

Kerr won the Booktrust Lifetime Achievement Award last year.

In 2015, Sainsbury’s based its flagship Christmas advert on Kerr’s Mog character. A tie in book was also exclusively sold through the supermarket to raise funds for Save the Children’s literacy campaign. 

Also that year, HarperCollins released Mister Cleghorn’s Seal, which marked Kerr’s first novel since 1978’s A Small Person Far Away.

Kerr has sold 3.61 million books for £18.5m through Nielsen BookScan since records began in 1998. Her biggest seller is The Tiger who Came to Tea (HarperCollins Children's Books) with 718,167 copies sold.