Kattens skratt

Eighth novel by author Sture Dahlström first published in 1983.

A novel about the uncompromising artists eternal suffering, either as poor dreaming about money for food or as a bribed bought capitalist artist ruined by money dreaming about his lost true life as poor.

John Blixt, a.k.a. the cat, is as author who totally broke is walking on the streets of London dressed only in a wolfskin fur and a newspaper tied around his stomach. He is starving and freezing and extremely lonely, except for when he's together with a woman called Patricia who is a nurse in a run down clinic. He survives by doing odd jobs, generally found by a friend called Mick. Jobs like running the projector at a cinema, ghost writer for an author with an advance from a publisher who cannot get a manuscript written, and even as escort for a rich older lady who needs somebody to go with to the theatre and restaurants.

Suddenly success; a publishing house in New York is interested in the cat's manuscripts, signs a contract and starts sending generous cheques on a monthly basis. The Cat starts living a life of luxury, staying at the Ritz and eating at three star restaurants. He gets lots of money, as much as he wants.

As part of the deal he is expected to change his manuscript according the publisher's wishes, to make it suit the the large paperback buying customer base in the USA and the film moguls in Hollywood. After a while he gets fed up by the falseness and the money rule. He collapses and ends up in hospital with complete loss of memory. Slowly his memory returns with memories of his true life. Spain and the beloved landscape, the fishing village, boat houses in the sunshine...

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