Cat’s Cafe by Matt Tarpley is an adorable comic anthology. I’ve occasionally came across a few of the comics on instagram. The premise of this anthology is simple: there are animals and creatures living in a small village who love to gather in a cat’s coffee shop. I picked up this book and fell in love with the cute art style. I thought the book would also be simple and comedic, but it had a lot more depth than I expected.
Mental illnesses such as anxiety were discussed in this comic. This book was categorized as a comedy–and there are funny moments– yet there was a great balance between tackling issues and watching the characters go about their daily lives.
The characters support one another and are endearing. Each has a unique personality. Axolotl is a confident and kind teenager in punk clothing, who helps others around him. Rabbit struggles with anxiety and at times, feels overwhelmed, but with the support of his friends, is able to overcome some of his struggles. Cat is the owner of the cafe. She is a great listener and provides a welcoming environment. There is also a penguin who is a coffee addict. I loved penguin’s antics throughout the comic. You can see his dedication to coffee in subtle (and maybe not-so-subtle) ways in this comic–he is first in line for the cafe in one of the illustrations, and runs into the cafe right when it opens.
This comic came out in May of 2020 and was a recent release. I am hoping that Matt Tarpley releases another anthology in the future! His comics can be viewed on his instagram. But the book does feature some exclusive comics.
If you love cute art styles and are looking for an uplifting read, Cat’s Cafe is certainly a great choice!
Rating: Excellent. This book is definitely my cup of tea–or rather, cup of coffee!