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Big Cat

Emma Lazell

Pavilion Children's


ISBN: 9781843654018

Price: £ 6.99

Publication date: 4 April 2019

Category: Picture Books

The brilliant debut from a rising star of the picture book world

Isobel’s grandma has lost her glasses and she can’t see a thing without them. While Isobel and Gran are in the garden searching for the specs, they come across a cat. A very big cat. A very big and friendly cat. The big cat moves in with them, much to the disgust of all gran’s other cats. He might be good fun, but he takes up lots of space and eats every scrap of food. Eventually the new cat’s mum and dad turn up, looking for their missing son. And they just happen to have found gran’s glasses too. The tiger family are delighted to be reunited – and gran now sees that she’s been sharing her house with… a tiger!

A heartwarming and surreal romp, packed with jokes and funny details and with an underlying message of acceptance. Emma’s bright colours and brilliant characterisation gives the book the look of a classic from the 1970s or earlier, but with a very modern sense of humour and sensibility.

"An utterly enjoyable piece of feline fan fiction … an entertaining romp of a story." The Herald


Emma Lazell is a UK based illustrator and author. Her work is linear, expressive, and sprinkled with irony and playfulness. 

In 2018 she completed the hugely prestigious MA in Children’s Book Illustration at Cambridge School of Art, Anglia Ruskin University, graduating with a Distinction. In 2014 she graduated with an undergraduate degree in Illustration from The University for the Creative Arts.



'Emma’s vibrant and fun illustrations really bring the story to life ... [a] is mischievous and humorous read accompanied by exquisite illustrations.'

'An utterly enjoyable piece of feline fan fiction … an entertaining romp of a story.'

‘A clever and gloriously offbeat picture book … Lazell packs her warm and friendly story with comical detail …With its Seventies retro feel, lavish illustration, surreal charm and subtle messages about the importance of acceptance, Big Cat will appeal to readers both young and old.’ 

‘Children will love ‘pawing’ over the vivid illustrations which gleefully capture the ensuing fun and chaos. A roaringly funny tale …’ 

'A modern-day classic with overtones of familiar stories Big Cat is a delight, easy to read, full of fabulous illustration and ideal for sharing with little ones – exactly as expected from a picture book! The book features hilarious text and brightly coloured illustrations that really bring the story to life, lifting it off the pages and guaranteeing you will laugh.’

‘Immediately took me back to my childhood.. hilarious… [a] delightful tale. Packed with fun, this is a gorgeous story, one to read over and over again.’

'[A] zany intergenerational story.. With a messy, scatty illustrative style, busy chaotic scenes, and a wonderful chattiness in the text, there is a huge amount of fun to discover in this lively picture book… A Big amount of fun.'

'Told through brilliant, larger-than-life illustrations and text, the chaos Big Cat causes comes leaping off the page...  Sure to delight readers and be a favourite at bedtime, this is definitely one to have on the bookshelf.'

'Humorous and surreal'

‘A classic in the making!’

‘Emma Lazell’s words work effortlessly with her artwork to create some wonderfully humorous scenes … Big Cat is a charming picture book, which is fabulous for reading out loud. Reception class adored it!’

'A fun read for lovers of cats and Judith Kerr’s iconic book.’

‘This surreal romp is reminiscent of children’s classic from the 1970s, with splendid humour and beautiful illustrations.’ 

‘A quick heart-warming read for the young ones, with bright illustrations.’


'A captivating, fast-paced debut … Big Cat is a chaotic & witty story, filled with humour. Immerse yourself in Emma Lazell’s lively & vibrant illustrations and keep an eye out for Emma, we have a feeling she’s going to make a real impact on the picture book scene.’

'There is real energy and humour in newcomer Lazell's art.'

Fiona Noble, The Bookseller magazine

Fiona Noble




  • Emma Lazell EYFS and Key Stage 1 teaching resources

    Fun teaching resources for all fans of Emma Lazell’s picturebooks Big Cat and That Dog!

  • Download the Big Cat activity pack

    HELP! Big Cat has gone missing! Complete this activity pack to reunite him with his family.