The Travelling Cat Chronicles by Hiro Arikawa
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Penguin Random House Canada
Recommended Age: 14+
Genres & Themes: Adult, Contemporary, Japan, Animals (Cats), Road Trip, Friendship, Coming of Age
This is the heart-opening story of Nana, a stray cat who finds a master, Satoru, to whom he grows close until Satoru cannot keep him anymore and the two of them travel in search of a new home, visiting friend after friend, reminiscing, making realizations and growing closer still. The more people Satoru and Nana visit, the more we understand about these two characters (especially their pasts and personalities) and many more.
I found this story very unique. I had never read a book about an animal before, an animal who shares his thoughts with the reader in such a way that I personally believed Nana to be real and an intelligent creature who is capable of full sentences. I call this a ‘‘heart-opening story’’ because it truly opens your heart wide to welcome these wonderful characters and emotional situations.
The writing is on the slow and dry side, despite the emotional content, which is why I won’t give this a five-star rating, but the story is whimsical, memorable and just all kinds of beautiful. I’m more of a dog person but the author almost convinced me that cats are worth adopting and loving until the day you die. There’s still doubt in my mind but here I am looking at cats differently—with more love and respect.
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Fab review! I really loved this book even though it broke my heart in a million pieces.