There are two means of refuge from the miseries of life: music and cats.

  • Albert Schweitzer

If you know anything about me, you will know that I am not an animal lover. As a child, my brother and I had low-maintenance pets, turtles and fish. They required little interaction by either party and just needed to be fed and their bowls cleaned. The end. Whilst we had dogs, they weren’t the kind of breeds that were house-trained and required cuddling and petting.

Cats on the other hand give me the heebie jeebies, they are a bit too quiet for my liking and they make me uncomfortable with their staring. Have you ever tried out-staring a cat? Believe me when I say that you would lose every time. It’s like their eyes are boring into your soul.

The thought of owning a cat never crossed my mind until I read Cat Lady by Dawn O’Porter. When a colleague loaned it to me to read, I found the book’s cover a tad bit off-putting and the colours bold and garish. If that wasn’t enough a woman’s face is head down in a sausage tin with her legs sticking out. I mean, really?

Listen to me, I would never judge a book by its cover again! Cat Lady was uproarious and had me struggling not to laugh out scandalously. However, I still got a few questionable stares from my work colleagues.

What a read! Dawn O’Porter writes in such an engaging and intimate manner, I felt as though I was reading her biography. It was also delightful to see my country of Trinidad and Tobago mentioned in a positive and inspirational way.

Cat Lady tells of the protagonist’s life hitting rock bottom, not once, but twice and in both cases, it was a cat that ‘saved’ her. In both cases she was rebirthed and came to a sense of self-awareness that allowed her to reclaim her life and reconcile with her past.

This book forced me to rethink the close bond people share with their pets, it’s not one that I have experienced but undoubtedly exists.

Animals are lifesavers and sometimes the best companions.

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