THE CAT MAN by Edward Hongland


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A conglomerate of the circus, the action in Council Bluffs, Iowa, is surrounded by the happenings in Detroit, Winona, Albany, Erie, Rockford, Elmira and Williamsport which follow David Cepate, known as Fiddler, and his career under the Big Top. In spite of the filthy, ragged way in which he and the winos and bums live, there is his love for the animals he cares for, his loyalty to the Animal chief, his determination to stick with the show since he has given up liquor, and his happiness -- and unhappiness -- as the trains and wagons roll. The beating up of Heavy strikes a bad note; Chief's drunkness another; the townless and their hindrance in setting up the tents and getting the performance on its way; the sick madmen and their highpitched stories -- and always the demands of the cats with their various personalities -- these are the patchwork of Fiddler's little life and the cause of his destruction. This is not only behind the scenes but down to the dung of circus living in which the tang of the tanbark loses out to the smell of the unwashed.

Pub Date: Jan. 12th, 1955
Publisher: Houghton, Mifflin