DIARY OF A CAT by Leigh W. Rutledge


True Confessions and Lifelong Observations of a Well-Adjusted House Cat
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 A year in the life of a house cat, as told by the cat (whose name is never revealed), from the author of A Cat's Little Instruction Book (not reviewed). With entries like ``June 25--Slept'' and ``September 5- -Unraveled all the toilet paper this afternoon,'' much of the content here is charming and playful. Rutledge's cat tells the story of its home life with the adoring Mrs. Vigil and her two other cats--affectionate Bobbie Boop and forlorn little Zachary. It also tells of its outdoor life with other cats, including Mr. Bull, a feline friend with whom he enjoys ``digging through people's trash, exploring everyone's yards, and playing with bugs.'' Interspersed with the ever-so-cute cat antics are more serious tales about neighbors and visiting relatives. In soap-opera fashion, we learn of Mrs. Thornhill's troubles with her rebellious teenage daughter; the aging Mrs. Mintucket, who decides to walk across America barefoot after staying indoors for 20 years; and the odd Pinchons up the block, who share their home with 23 cats. About two-thirds of the way through, however, the book takes a bizarre turn as Mrs. Vigil suffers a sudden stroke and has to be hospitalized. Her commandant-like ``friend'' Mrs. Axe moves in, begins giving away Vigil's cherished cats, alienates the neighbors and their pets, and finally meets her own violent demise. There is a happy ending, however, as Mrs. Vigil regains her strength and manages to return home and reunite her cat family. A slim volume, mostly light and whimsical, but also melodramatic and rather peculiar. All in all, a strange little book.(Book-of-the-Month Club selection)

Pub Date: Nov. 20th, 1995
ISBN: 0-525-94003-0
Page count: 176pp
Publisher: Dutton
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15th, 1995


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