Tuesday, April 16, 2013
One More Maneki Neko
Maneki Neko the Take of the Beckoning Cat by Susan Lendroth, Illus. by Kathryn Otoshi, 2010.
This is another version of the story described in my post Tales of Lucky, Happy Cats . Tama's beckoning habit is explained by her up and down face washing movements. Nevertheless, she leads a samurai to safety during a nasty thunderstorm, who in turn helps Tama's poor monk friend by giving him enough money to turn Kotoku Monastary into Gotokuji Temple.
Nearly all of the book's scenes are washed with plums and pinks, giving the land a magical feel. The action is backed by beautiful sunrise and sunset light. This contrasts well with the colors of the storm, when deeper purple and blue greys are used for the threatening skies and dark shadows. Tama and her monk share many scenes of companionship, from strolling through the marketplace, to cuddling, to enjoying the moonlight while drinking tea (the monk) and chasing moths (Tama).