Gruffalo artist to give TS Eliot's cats a makeover

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London, Mar 30 : The characters of TS Eliot's cats from Old ossum's Book of Practical Cats, are to be given a well-deserved akeover by Gruffalo artist, Axel Scheffler.

Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats, originally published by aber and Faber in 1939, is to emerge in a new version - with llustrations by the artist best known for his depiction of the ruffalo, the beastly creature with "terrible teeth in his errible jaws".

The new creations by Axel Scheffler, a German-born illustrator ho lives in London, are likely to be as eagerly awaited by igures in the political world as by young families.

Gordon Brown's modus operandi is said to bear more than a passing esemblance to that of the Mystery Cat, Macavity, who honed the nack of slinking away at times of mayhem and misdemeanour - You'll be sure to find him resting, or a-licking of his thumbs, Or engaged in doing complicated long-division sums."

The feline poems have been a worldwide success since it first ppeared and has never been out of print.

Translated into many languages, it was turned into the Andrew loyd Webber musical Cats, which won a clutch of awards and ecame one of the longest-running shows in London's West End.

The new version of the book, to be published next year, will use cheffler's colour illustrations.

It will appear in a year that is both the 70th anniversary of liot's original and the 80th of Faber and Faber itself.

"It's also a little bit of a personal project for me as Faber ublished my very first illustrated books 20 years ago," Times nline quoted Scheffler, as saying.

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