12 January 2015
If you're not familiar with Pusheen the cat, let me enlighten you: Pusheen is an adorably blobby little cartoon cat, featured in Claire Belton's animated webcomics. And while there's no animation in "I Am Pusheen The Cat," this little book is a great display of the blob-cat's smiley, adorable charm -- and it serves as a nice non-medicinal cure for depression.
In case you're not familiar with Pusheen, the book opens with a little intro -- her birthday, gender, best feature ("toe beans"), hobbies, favorite foods ("All of them"), and so on. There's also a cute little intro for her fluffy baby sister Stormy.
Pusheen is like a lot of cats -- she loves food, sleeping in inconvenient places, being petted, and yodeling at two in the morning. The book contains such things as the "petting chart," her games, a guide to "acquiring" treats, sleeping positions, fantasies about being either tiny or huge, career options, things that look like cats, scary stories for a cat, cat etiquette, dinocats, reasons you should be a cat, practical uses for marshmallows, being fancy, where to sleep, how to cook Pusheen-style, and so on.
We also glimpse Pusheen's vacation in Japan, which seems like the place to worship her blobby tiny-footed cuteness. Stormy does some magic and acquires superpowers, and she turns out to be even more whimsical than Pusheen. And finally, we have a year in the life of Pusheen, starting with a New Year's cracker and continuing with valentines, St. Paddy's day, springtime, the Fourth of July ("Think about eagles and stuff"), the joys of autumn (think "pie"), lazy costume ideas for Halloween, Thanksgiving, building the ideal snowman, and things cats want for Christmas.
The really charming part of Pusheen is that her little adventures are pretty true to kitty-life, and there's a lot of stuff that will charm cat-owners (such as her ways of trying to fix technology, which involve staring, shoving and chewing on it). But there's also a whimsical side (Pusheen's fantasies of being a rainbow-maned kittycorn) that gets in Pusheen's head, and her little adventures are just adorable.
For instance, we are told the various steps of how to make a pizza by a chef-hatted Pusheen. Step four of pizza-making: "Make a huge mess because you are a cat"... and it just sort of goes downhill from there.
It's about as complicated as a children's picture book, with quick captions of everything Pusheen gets up to, which suits the cartoon style nicely. Everything is very simple, and Pusheen herself is a little blob with tiny bump-feet ("With tiny paws come tiny responsibilities") and an adorably expressive little face.
And the simplicity is part of what makes it feel so charming. When I first picked this book up, I was feeling rather depressed over love-life troubles... and by the end, I had cheered up considerably. It's like someone managed to put endorphins on paper.
"I Am Pusheen the Cat" is a cute little feel-good cartoon collection -- a must have for cat-lovers, and for anyone who just likes little cartoon cats doing cute things.