Friday, November 5, 2010

Staff Pick: On Cats

Book Cover

On Cats by Doris Lessing

I feel kind of weird giving my highest accolades to a book about, well, cats, but this was a pretty special book. Squeamish cat-lovers beware ~ Doris Lessing starts out by telling of her girlhood growing up on a farm in South Africa, shooting baby kittens with her father because they simply couldn't manage to keep them all. I actually love her for refusing to be sentimental. Yet somehow there is an acute tenderness in her writing about her cats, especially as she grows older, despite wry tales of guns & whiskey & too many kittens. Remarkably like her darker works on the terrors of motherhood, failures of communism, etc., Lessing really zeroes in on the personalities and nuances of her characters. It's just that, this time, they happen to be cats! This was one of those especially good ones that I had to read really slow at the last chapter because I didn't want it to end.

Rachel - Adult Services

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