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Madeline and the Cats of Rome: 01/09/10
In my review of Mad About Madeline, the omnibus compiled by Ludwig Bemelmans's grandson, I mentioned the posthumously published Madeline in America which was finished by John Bemelmans Marciano. Madeline and the Cats of Rome is Marciano's first attempt to write and draw a Madeline book in his grandfather's style.
Madeline and the Cats of Rome takes Madeline, Miss Clavel, the eleven other girls go to Rome on holiday. While on a walking tour of the famous sites, a child resembling the "bad hat" steels Miss Clavel's camera. Madeline as she is wont to do takes matters into her own hands.
Madeline's chase through Rome is done against paintings of the most well known buildings done in Bemelmans's style. The confrontation and resolution of the stolen camera is a bit preachy compared to the original couple of Madeline books. There's a twist to the resolution that lightens the mood but it's still not as light hearted as the classic Madeline is.