THE ABANDONED by Paul Gallico


Age Range: 8 - 12
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The story of Peter, 8, who in delirium after an accident, lived the life of a cat, offers a challenge to the storyteller's art—a challenge which is met with a certain amount of success.

For Peter, although knowing he has been transformed into a cat, still retains the knowledge that he is a little boy, and it is as a boy he acts, even after his good friend, Jennie Baldrin, gives him a thorough education in how to act and think like a cat. She saves his life, takes him to visit an old man who wants them to live with him, lures him into a trip aboard a London-Glasgow coastal boat (quite a wonderful captain and crew here) where they pay for their passage by catching mice and rats, and Peter saves Jenny from drowning. In Glasgow, they are again homeless, escape vicious dogs to find safety high up in the towers of a bridge and discover they can't get down, but they achieve momentary fame when they are rescued. Back in London, they find the old man dead, Peter revisits his old home, and Jennie finds the young mistress she thought had abandoned her but leaves her for Peter. Peter has a careless, insane adventure with a Siamese, almost loses Jennie and when he finds her, fights to the death for her...and awakens to being a boy again, ready to own a kitten of his own.

A deep knowledge of cat lore and legend, feline psychology and behavior aims this toward a cat-loving audience, while its message of loneliness and love will find a reception among those who have a feeling for sentiment. (Fantasy. 8-12)

Pub Date: Sept. 11th, 1950
ISBN: 978-1-59017-626-9
Page count: 307pp
Publisher: Knopf
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1st, 1950


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