For all my claims of being young at heart, I don’t always jump at very pink books. I really must change. If Meg Rosoff hadn’t told me that Cathy Cassidy is lovely, I would most likely have stayed clear of her pink and shiny book covers. Which would have deprived me not only of some good books, but also of meeting Cathy and her camper van. Well, I daresay one camper van more or less isn’t the end of the world (though the flowers on the side brought me straight back to the late sixties), but you can never have too many Cathys.
Cathy and her (chauffeur driven!!) van turned up at the watering hole yesterday, in the rain, for a Friendship Festival, with colourful cushions, bracelet making, muffin decorating, hand painting, ice cream sundaes and lots more. There were so many girls there. And some of them didn’t want to go home at the end. Cathy’s the kind of lady girls take to. I had to stop myself from sitting down at her green booted feet, and leave it to the younger fans. (For one, I’d never have got up from the floor again.)
I don’t know where to start. The books maybe. Her fifth, Sundae Girl, was published a couple of weeks ago. There was also a free book with Mizz magazine last week. Cathy’s books are described as similar to Jacqueline Wilson’s. They are, and again, they’re not. Can’t quite put my finger on it. But they’re good. The latest one mixes alcoholism and Alzheimers, Elvis impersonators and ice cream vans. You laugh and you cry. And I shouldn’t really admit this in public, but I do like Cathy’s boys. If they are based on real people, please introduce me to them.
Cathy favours daydreaming, and she gives advice on how to do it and get away with it. Not that I need such advice, having perfected my act long ago. She also steals from her fans. She takes their names, in case she wants to put them in a book. She notes how their hair looks. Their clothes. (Cathy, I fully expect to feature in your next one, and preferably not as the horrible teacher/ neighbour/ whatever.)
I’m not sure what I’m recommending here. Cathy or her books? Well, anyone can read her books, so I’d start there. Then go on her website. And have a go at finding an event to meet her.