Read an extract from the new Beatrix Potter story about a well-behaved black cat with an exciting double life, discovered after 100 years. The Tale of Kitty in Boots will be published on 1 September 2016 with illustrations by Quentin Blake
Once upon a time there was a serious, well-behaved young black cat.
It belonged to a kind old lady who assured me that no other cat could compare with Kitty.
She lived in constant fear that Kitty might be stolen — “I hear there is a shocking fashion for black cat-skin muffs; wherever is Kitty gone to? Kitty! Kitty!”
She called it “Kitty”, but Kitty called herself “Miss Catherine St. Quintin”.
Cheesebox called her “Q”, and Winkiepeeps called her “Squintums”. They were very common cats. The old lady would have been shocked had she known of the acquaintance.
And she would have been painfully surprised had she ever seen Miss Kitty in a gentleman’s Norfolk jacket, and little fur-lined boots.
Now most cats love the moonlight and staying out at nights; it was curious how willingly Miss Kitty went to bed. And although the wash-house where she slept — locked in — was always very clean, upon some mornings Kitty was let out with a black chin. And on other mornings her tail seemed thicker, and she scratched.
It puzzled me. It was a long time before I guessed there were in fact two black cats!
"A serious, well-behaved young black cat, who leads a daring double life defeating vile villains."
When Miss Kitty sneaks out to go hunting in her beautiful boots, she gets herself into all sorts of scrapes, but on this particular night she meets the foxiest hunter of them all - Mr. Tod!
This utterly entertaining tale is filled with mistaken identities, devious villains and even an appearance from Peter Rabbit.
Told with Beatrix Potter's trademark dry humour and wry observations, this brilliant tale is sure to become as popular as her original classics and is illustrated by the best-loved Quentin Blake.
Manuscript courtesy Frederick Warne & Co. & the V&A Museum
Find out more about the author