Recently Australia has been affected by fires with the smoke blowing across and creating an eerie glow in New Zealand. With so many people impacted, and effects felt across the Tasman it is easy to forget that we have been affected by bush fires here in New Zealand.
In February 2019 a spark in a paddock in Pigeon Valley became the largest fire in New Zealand for over 75 years. With around 3,500 people evacuated including the entire township of Wakefield and stories of bravery by up to 150 volunteer fire fighters battling the fire comes the story of Dozer the Fire Cat.
Dozer, a real-life cat went missing during the fires creating a heart wrenching story (that has a happy ending!) turned in to a children’s book by author Robyn Prokop. Beautifully illustrated by Jenny Cooper, one of New Zealand’s top children’s illustrators with over 20 years’ experience Dozer the Fire Cat is a modern-day story of survival.
When the fires began, Dozer the cat was busy cleaning, pouncing and sleeping missing his evacuation out of home. An anxious and upset family had to leave while checking the evacuation centre to see if Dozer had hitched a ride out of there.
This is a beautiful story which will tug at children’s heart strings but has a happy ending to the relief of both his family and the reader.
Children love to read, and this story will be no exception. It is a local story based in Nelson so children can relate to the area and many families have a cat or pet so children will understand the concern and danger that Dozer is in. The expressions of the worried family are overshadowed by Dozers proud face when catching a bug and eventual concerned look when he realises his family had to go.
A beautiful story with the type displayed in the book to compliment the exquisite illustrations, this is one that will be cherished by many families both in New Zealand and abroad.
“Facial expressions of both farmer and his animals are great. There is action aplenty in [Jenny Cooper’s] depiction of the various farmyard animals.” — Bookrapt
Published by Scholastic NZ, 1 February 2020, RRP $18.99, Paperback