Author Noboru Baba introduces eleven hungry stray cats and one giant fish in this highly imaginative and tremendously funny picture book. The strays find a small fish, but once it’s divided up they each get barely a bite. A granddaddy cat with long whiskers comes along to say that if they want more they should go to the lake with monster-sized fish in it on the other side of the mountain. Traveling across hill and dale, the eleven cats arrive at the lake, where they build a raft and launch it onto the water in search of the giant fish. They’re still looking when the sun goes down?and continue the search when it comes up again. Three days go by with no sign of any giant fish. They all go ashore on a small island and remain on the lookout for several more days without luck, but then one day a big fish leaps from the water. They pounce on it at once, but they don’t stand a chance against its bulk. Then one evening they find a big fish asleep on the island, and this time when they pounce, they manage to capture it. Eager to show the others their success, they attach it to the raft and start for home. When night falls, the raft is wrapped in darkness, and when morning light breaks, all that’s left of the fish is its bones. The eleven cats are sprawled out on the raft with their hugely swollen bellies turned to the sky, one and all.
English cover, Carolrhoda Books, 1988