A to Z: P – The PHOTOgraphed Cat

a2z2018

photgraphed cat

The Photographed Cat:
Picturing Human-Feline Ties, 1890-1940 

Arnold Arluke & Lauren Rolfe
Syracuse University Press, 2013 

From the book jacket: “With more than 130 illustrations, The Photographed Cat: Picturing Human-Feline Ties, 1890-1940 is both an archive and an analytical exploration of the close relationships between people and their cats during a period significant for photography and for modern understandings of animals as pets. This volume examines the cultural implications of feline companions while also celebrating the intimacy and joys of pets and family photographs. In seven thematic sections, Arluke and Rolfe engage with the collection of antique images as representations of both real and ideal relationships, nothing the cultural tends and tropes that occur. Whether as surrogate children, mascots or companions to women, cats are a part of modern American life and visual culture.

“Entertaining, smart, and filled with a collector’s trove of wonderful images, The Photographed Cat pays homage to the surprising range of relationships we have with cats and offers thoughtful consideration of the ways in which represent them.”

The Photographed Cat is more of a scholarly work than a book of photographs. The photos are really wonderful and I wish there were more of them. While people have changed the way they look, cats don’t ever change. The cat next to the little boy in 1890 looks like the cat sitting next to a child today which goes to show you humans how reliable and faithful we are!!

I will admit that I really didn’t read the book. When my Aunt Sabina picked-up this book from the library, she thought it was a coffee table book. But as I looked at it, I realized I didn’t want to read the “analytical exploration of the close relationships between people and their cats” as much as look at the lovely photographs. From the few snippets I did read the book is fascinating but a bit like reading homework for a sociology course. So, I just mainly stuck to the photographs and enjoyed them a lot.

Rating: 4 out of 5 paws because the photograph collection is amazing!!

Reviewer:

jack-locJack

 

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In case you were wondering…

How BobbieSue was doing — she’s been in hiding since PeggySue started her whole Jekyll and Hyde thing, here she is!

This one goes out to her boyfriend, Millie.

PeggySue went to the vet the other day and she said we just have to wait it out for the hormones to finish working their way out of her body.

Maybe another week or so. I know I’ll be glad to have the old PeggySue back!!

Love you, especially Penny!!

Purrs and pawpats,

Toby!

A to Z: O – OH! Toto Where Did You Go?

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Oh Toto! Where Did You Go?
 
Jonathan Hall
Illustrated by Carol Ruzicka
2013
 
In this book Toto is now an adult kitty and one day he decides to go on a walkabout to visit friends. He has catnip tea for breakfast, visits the bank to make a donation to the local shelter, the firefighters at the local fire station, a nursing home, an elementary school, a tv station and more! He has such a full day and finally realizes that home is best.
 
This book’s story is written in ryhme which makes it extra charming. The illustrations are beautifully detailed so that they convey the story without reading. Very pretty.
 
We loved this book and that 100% of the proceeds of the book goes toward animal rescue shelters, including the Animal Rescue League of Boston. Toto has his own Facebook page which is HERE.
 
As a result of his rescue, Toto became famous and travels from place to place meeting and greeting humans and teaching them to be kind to animals.
Rating: 5 out of 5 paws!!!
Reviewer:
img_20180110_154218286593329294.jpgSimon
 

A to Z: N – NAT the Cat

a2z2018

nat the cat

Nat the Cat
Can Sleep Like That 

Victoria Allenby
Illustrations by Tara Anderson
PajamaPress, 2013 

From the dust jacket: “Nat has a talent for sleeping all day long. Name any place in the house and Nat can sleep in, on, under, or sprawled across it. In fact, Nat is so devoted to slumber that the kitten’s energetic escapades don’t bother him one bit, until …

“When the night time quiet falls,

When strange shadows fill the halls,

“Now Nat is all fired up and ready to go! Will the kitten be able to keep up, or is it time for her to find the perfect place to settle down for a wee nap?

“Victoria Allenby’s rhythmic verse perfectly accompanies Tara Anderson’s irresistible art. Cat lovers young and old will delight in this not-quite-ready-for-bedtime treat.”

Toby particularly loved this book when I read it to him – he likes anything that stars a ginger man-cat. But I think it’s because the way and where Nat sleeps. Just like Toby, Nat can sleep on his back, in drawers, half-on and half-off a shelf, in sunpuddles and always in mom’s way when she’s busy around the house. Me? I find the most comfortable spot around – mom’s bed – at least 99.9% of the time! At night, also just like Nat, Toby seems to get a second wind and tears around the house like a madcat, tearing up the place!

Anyway, this is a fun book for kittens; the book jacket says it’s a good bedtime book, but I don’t think so – it’s liable to excite your kittens rather than settle them down. Maybe you can read it to them after naptime to get them going again. The rhymes are easy, the printing is large and a mix of black and white/yellow on dark and white background, and the illustrations are so cute!! We really enjoyed it!

Rating 4 out of 5 paws for a sleeping ginger cat like Toby!!!

Reviewer:

img_20180110_154218286593329294.jpgSimon

nat the cat b

 

A to Z: M – Martin’s Mice

a2z2018

martins mice

Martin’s Mice 

Dick King-Smith
Illustrated by Jez Alborough
Cover illustration by Jon Goodell
Crown Books for Young Readers, 2001, 1988 

From the back of the book: “Martin’s not like all the other kittens on the farm: he doesn’t eat mice. In fact, he thinks they’re adorable and keeps them as pets in the old bathtub in the loft. He visits them, feeds them, and does everything he can to protect them from his mouse-hunting family. But Martin’s in for a shock: his mice run away! Why would they ever leave their safe bathtub? It’s not until Martin himself is imprisoned as a pet that he learns the true meaning of freedom—and friendship.”

Poor Martin! He actually throws up when he is forced by his mother to eat a mouse! His brother and sister harangue him mercilessly because he won’t eat mice; his mother berates him because he won’t eat mice. But Martin doesn’t care! He has a positive attitude and learns to avoid his family when he can. He does show growth – he learns to stand up for himself and, as the publishers said, learns how important it is for wild things to be free.

I enjoyed reading the book – the story itself is an interesting concept, the important characters are well thought out, and we never know the names of the humans (other than ‘the farmer’, ‘the farmer’s wife’, and ‘the girl’) because they are just background characters. The real action is in the barnyard and all its inhabitants. The copy I have is discarded library book and the print is a good size for elementary-aged readers. If you can find a copy and you like cat books, you might consider adding it to your own library.

Rating 4 out of 5 paws – Martin is a lovable character;the story encourages positive morals, and to have compassion for others who are not like you.

Reviewer:

img_20180313_1445328841459750072.jpgPeggySue