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Montreal-based Elisabeth Belliveau’s first book, Something to Pet the Cat About, compiles a number of her zine works of the same title together with new material. It’s packed full of cowboys, kittens, Plateau kitchens, girls with asymmetrical haircuts, skinny bearded boys with bandanas, sketches of roses, horses, typewriters and house-pets. It’s the best of the Montreal art school stereotype, but done seriously, impressively well. Non-linear à la Sonja Ahler’s Temper, Temper, it’s as gratifying to open Something to Pet the Cat About randomly as it is to read it from cover to cover. Complete with rounded corners, Something to Pet the Cat About is intended to look like someone’s sweet stacked sketchbook. Endearingly, even the copyright info and acknowledgements are set in the author’s handwriting. Pages and pages of black line drawings, lowercase letters, lists, bits, anecdotes and musings read as a “best of the best of.” I conclude with one of my favourite lists from this book:

Things I want you to give back:

1.) my pink Thermos

2.) my friends

3.) all the stories I told too many times

4.) 1999

5.) my Palace Brothers CD…


(Tara-Michelle Ziniuk)

by Elisabeth Belliveau, $19.95, Conundrum Press, P.O Box 55003, CSP Fairmount, Montreal, QC, H2T 3E2

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