Rita Mae Brown's earliest memory is of the soothing purr of Mickey, her family's long-haired tiger cat, who curled up and claimed a spot in her crib. From there, a steady parade of cats, dogs, horses, and all manner of two- and four-legged critters have walked, galloped, and flown into and through her world. In Animal Magnetism, the bestselling author shares the lessons she's learned from these marvelous creatures as well as her deep appreciation for them. Brown readily admits that she prefers the company of animals to people, a trait handed down from her mother. After all, Brown explains, "There's no such thing as a dumb dog, but God knows there are continents filled with dumb humans." In fact, by observing the dogs on her farm, the horses in her stables, and the cats that have helped her flesh out her many novels, Brown has gained better insight into herself and other human beings-one need only look at a chicken coop, she once realized, to see its striking similarity to her mother's clucking and preening group of friends. In hilarious and heartwarming stories, Brown introduces us to Franklin, a parrot with a wicked sense of humor; R.C., a courageous Doberman who defined loyalty and sacrifice; Suzie Q, the horse who taught her the meaning of hard work; Baby Jesus, a tough tiger cat from New York City with sharp teeth to match his attitude; and of course the beloved and prolific Sneaky Pie, who needs no introduction to her legions of fans. In her succinct and personable style, Brown also revisits the very human parts of her life-growing up in the segregated South, dealing with the pain and the loss of those dearest to her, and coming into her own as an adult and as a writer. Every recollection here reveals nature's delight and wonder-and offers solid evidence of the ability of animals to love. As funny as it is poignant, Animal Magnetism shows how these inspiring creatures, great and small, can bring out the best in us, restore us to our greater selves, and even save our lives.
A leading reporter offers a tour of military working dogs’ extraordinary training, heroic accomplishments, and the lasting impacts they have on those who work with them.
People all over the world have been riveted by the story of Cairo, the Belgian Malinois who was a part of the Navy SEAL team that led the raid on Osama bin Laden’s compound. A dog’s natural intelligence, physical abilities, and pure loyalty contribute more to our military efforts than ever before. You don't have to be a dog lover to be fascinated by the idea that a dog—the cousin of that furry guy begging for scraps under your table—could be one of the heroes who helped execute the most vital and high-tech military mission of the new millennium.
Now Maria Goodavage, editor and featured writer for one of the world's most widely read dog blogs, tells heartwarming stories of modern soldier dogs and the amazing bonds that develop between them and their handlers. Beyond tales of training, operations, retirement, and adoption into the families of fallen soldiers, Goodavage talks to leading dog-cognition experts about why dogs like nothing more than to be on a mission with a handler they trust, no matter how deadly the IEDs they are sniffing, nor how far they must parachute or rappel from aircraft into enemy territory.
“Military working dogs live for love and praise from their handlers,” says Ron Aiello, president of the United States War Dogs Association and a former marine scout dog handler. “The work is all a big game, and then they get that pet, that praise. They would do anything for their handler.” This is an unprecedented window into the world of these adventurous, loving warriors.
“A moving portrait of the loyal, courageous, furry warriors who truly are an enlisted Man's Best Friend.”
“ is a fascinating book about the valiant things that military dogs do as told through the words of the soldiers who fight beside them. It also shows you how military service dogs are created, told through the words of the trainers and scientists who know the process. It is written in an easy and entertaining style and will acquaint you with dozens of canine heroes ranging from Stubby, who fought in WWI, to Cairo, who was a member of the raiding party that took down Osama Bin Laden. It is a great read for anyone who appreciates dogs and heroes.”
“If the idea of dogs at war conjures up thoughts of harsh methods and unrelenting discipline, think again. Maria Goodavage's revealing and engaging books exposes the unexpected trust and affection that flows both ways between dog and handler. You may already care about dogs: This book will heighten your respect for them.”
“Inspiring personal stories of the many canine allies (and their handlers) who have dramatically enhanced military command units and examines how this indelible human-canine bond often transcends the atrocities of wartime violence.”
“Stories of spooked pups aboard battle-bound Hueys and dogs in the line of fire reveal surprisingly human-like response to war, and posit these military mutts as admirable—and capable—soldiers.”
When James Bowen found an injured, ginger street cat curled up in the hallway of his sheltered accommodation, he had no idea just how much his life was about to change. James was living hand to mouth on the streets of London and the last thing he needed was a pet.
Yet James couldn’t resist helping the strikingly intelligent tom cat, whom he quickly christened Bob. He slowly nursed Bob back to health and then sent the cat on his way, imagining he would never see him again. But Bob had other ideas.
Soon the two were inseparable and their diverse, comic and occasionally dangerous adventures would transform both their lives, slowly healing the scars of each other’s troubled pasts.
James and his street cat Bob have been on a remarkable journey together. In the years since their story ended in the bestselling A STREET CAT NAMED BOB James, with Bob’s help, has begun to find his way back to the real world. Almost every day, Bob provides moments of intelligence, bravery and humour, at the same time opening his human friend’s eyes to important truths about friendship, loyalty, trust – and the meaning of happiness. In the continuing tale of their life together James shows the many ways in which Bob has been his protector and guardian angel through times of illness, hardship, even life-threatening danger. As they high five together for their crowds of admirers, James knows that the tricks he’s taught Bob are nothing compared to the lessons he’s learnt from his street-wise cat.
IF YOU OWN A CAT YOU MUST OWN THIS BOOK
“The Erma Bombeck of cat writers!”
Cotton mice found doing the dead man’s float in the water dish…5 AM wake-up calls… a “no-closed doors” policy… the cat declares a holy war when put on a diet.
• The Great Cat Butt Wiping Adventure
• Jingle Ball Horrors
• The Creature Under the Fridge
• Yoga Cat
• The Big Brown Mouse & Other Toys Our Cat Loathes
Genre: Science, Education
100 Cats Who Made a Difference
If you don’t believe that one cat has the power to alter civilization, then you’ve obviously never heard of Tibbles (p. 12), the cat who single-handedly wiped out an entire species. Or Ahmedabad (p. 61), a Siamese kitten who sparked riots throughout Pakistan. Or Snowball (p. 14), the cat who helped to convict dozens of murderers and criminals. Or Felix (p. 155), the first cat to explore outer space.
These are just four of the , and this book honors their extra-ordinary contributions to science, history, art, government, religion, and more. You’ll meet a cat who filed a lawsuit (p. 66) and a cat who was slapped with a restraining order (p. 75). You’ll meet cats who have inspired great works of literature (p. 90) and classical music (p. 102). You’ll even meet a cat who telephoned the police to save the life of his owner (p. 162). These beautifully illustrated true stories are a tribute to the intelligence, bravery, and loving nature of cats all over the world.
Olivia is very protective over her lovely new kitten, Smudge. But when her big brother's naughty friend Rob comes to tea, she worries that he'll tease Smudge. Olivia hides the little kitten away, but later that night she is nowhere to be found. Could Smudge's disappearance have anything to do with Rob?
This story is about a young girl called Helena who helps out at the local vet surgery where her older cousin, Lucy works. On the way to the surgery one day, they find an injured kitten under a car. They feel sorry for the kitten and take him straight to the clinic. Helena loves this cat and takes care of him as longs as he's at the surgery. There he is operated on and gets a cast. Caramel (as Helena calls him) has no chip or collar. He has nobody to claim him. He's homeless. Caramel is fed up of being stuck in the clinic! Will anyone give this poor kitten a home? Who will claim him? Find out in The Brave Kitten.
Tucked away in an idyllic corner of the West Country, you’d think Doreen and her husband Charles would be enjoying a peaceful life — but far from it. Their wily Siamese companions still keep them on their toes. The Toveys are presented with a new problem when the local cattery closes down. Where will they leave Saska and Shebalu when they go on holiday? And so they buy a caravan to take the cats away with them, only to discover that packing up and leaving home is far from a holiday when seal-points are involved…
Ava's new kitten, Tiger, may be small but he makes up for it with his big personality and sense of adventure. As Tiger gets up to various escapades Ava finds herself coming to the rescue, even having to save the kitten from next-door's dogs when Tiger climbs over the garden wall. But when the kitten disappears one night Ava has no idea where he could be. Meanwhile, Tiger is stuck up in a tall tree, cold and alone. The next day Ava is walking home from school with her friend Jess, about to put up missing posters, when she hears a meow and spots Tiger. The girls go to get Jess's dad, who has a tall ladder, but the terrified kitten only retreats further into the tree as he sees this strange man approach. Ava bravely climbs up with some cat treats, and she and her beloved kitten are reunited.
Alfie has always loved playing in the overgrown garden next door. It is here he plays with Penguin, an enormous black- and-white cat, a stray who Alfie has claimed as his own. But when his next door neighbour's granddaughter, Grace, comes to live with her, she decides Penguin belongs to her! Alfie knows he can't force Penguin to be with him, but he wishes the cat didn't want to spend time with Grace either. What neither of them realises is that while they thought Penguin was with the other one, he has actually disappeared…
Felix the Fluffy Kitten certainly lives up to his name—his fluffy fur gets everywhere—even in the bath! Will Jodie's mom learn to deal with fluff? Nell the Naughty Kitten can't stop making mischief! On the farm where she lives she is always pestering the pigs and disturbing the ducks. Will she ever learn to be a real farm kitten? Meet Snuggles the Sleepy Kitten—he spends all his time snoozing! But in his dreams he's a fierce and brave hero, chasing mice and climbing trees. Will he ever find his real world as exciting as his dreams? When Star the Snowy Kitten is found by Michael it seems like the perfect fit—Michael has always wanted a kitten, and Star really wants a new home. But Michael's mom says he's not old enough to look after a kitten yet. Will he be able to keep Star?
The story of Dewey the celebrated library cat is now available for the youngest of readers in this new, fully- illustrated picture book adventure. When Librarian Vicki Myron finds a young kitten abandoned in the Spencer Library return box, she nurses him back to health, deciding then and there that he will be their library cat, and naming him, appropriately, Dewey Readmore Books. Dewey loves his new home, but once he discovers the littlest library visitors-who like to chase him, pull his tail, and squeeze him extra tight-Dewey begins to wonder if he's truly cut out for the demands of his new job. In the end, he is triumphant as he realizes that helping people big and small is what he is meant to do, and that by sharing his special brand of Dewey love, he can be the best library cat of all.
The odds had always been stacked against Homer, the blind kitten nobody wanted. But destiny took a hand the day he met Gwen Cooper, and with the publication twelve years later of the international bestseller "Homer’s Odyssey," Homer went from beloved house cat to world-wide star. He became the scourge and darling of the reporters, photographers, videographers, bloggers, and radio hosts who clamored to meet him—dragging his hapless human behind him as he greeted fame with his usual joie de vivre and occasional “catitude.” He became a spokes- cat for the cause of special- needs animals everywhere, and eventually the wise older mentor to the new special- needs kitten who would enter his and Gwen’s lives. Most importantly, Homer taught those who loved him best how to live and die with courage and joy—and left behind a rescue community of “Homer’s Heroes” that continues to save countless lives in his name. By turns humorous and tender, this beautifully written, 115- page sequel concludes the adventures of Homer the Blind Wonder Cat—the fearless feline who proved that love isn’t something you see with your eyes, that even the smallest of creatures can make a big difference, and that true love lives forever.
Fifteen years earlier, doctors had warned that Homer—a tiny, sightless kitten—was unlikely to survive and probably wouldn’t have much of a life even if he did. Miraculously and against all the odds, however, Homer grew into a feline dynamo who scaled seven-foot bookcases with ease, saved his human mom’s life when he chased a late-night burglar from their apartment, and rose to global fame—paving the way for other special-needs animals once considered “unadoptable.” Now, only two weeks before Christmas, with doctors once again decreeing that Homer didn’t have much time—that he wouldn’t even make it to Christmas Eve—Homer showed everyone that he still had one more miracle left in him. The heroic blind cat proved again, once and for all, that hope and love aren’t things you see with your eyes. You see them with your heart. Humorous and heartwarming, Homer and the Holiday Miracle will leave you filled with the true spirit of the season. It’s the ideal stocking-stuffer for the cat lover on your list—and the perfect holiday treat for yourself. Read and rejoice!
Once in nine lives, something extraordinary happens... The last thing Gwen Cooper wanted was another cat. She already had two, not to mention a phenomenally underpaying job and a recently broken heart. Then Gwen’s veterinarian called with a story about a three-week-old eyeless kitten who’d been abandoned. It was love at first sight. Everyone warned that Homer would always be an "underachiever," never as playful or independent as other cats. But the kitten nobody believed in quickly grew into a three-pound dynamo, a tiny daredevil with a giant heart who eagerly made friends with every human who crossed his path. Homer scaled seven-foot bookcases with ease and leapt five feet into the air to catch flies in mid-buzz. He survived being trapped alone for days after 9/11 in an apartment near the World Trade Center, and even saved Gwen’s life when he chased off an intruder who broke into their home in the middle of the night. But it was Homer’s unswerving loyalty, his infinite capacity for love, and his joy in the face of all obstacles that inspired Gwen daily and transformed her life. And by the time she met the man she would marry, she realized Homer had taught her the most important lesson of all: Love isn’t something you see with your eyes. Homer’s Odyssey is the once-in- a-lifetime story of an extraordinary cat and his human companion. It celebrates the refusal to accept limits—on love, ability, or hope against overwhelming odds. By turns jubilant and moving, it’s a memoir for anybody who’s ever fallen completely and helplessly in love with a pet.
How much of an impact can an animal have? How many lives can one cat touch? How is it possible for an abandoned kitten to transform a small library, save a classic American town, and eventually become famous around the world? You can't even begin to answer those questions until you hear the charming story of Dewey Readmore Books, the beloved library cat of Spencer, Iowa. Dewey's story starts in the worst possible way. Only a few weeks old, on the coldest night of the year, he was stuffed into the returned book slot at the Spencer Public Library. He was found the next working by library director Vicki Myron, a single mother who had survived the loss of her family farm, a breast cancer scare, and an alcoholic husband. Dewey won her heart, and the hearts of the staff, by pulling himself up and hobbling on frostbitten feet to nudge each of hem in a gesture of thanks and love. For the next nineteen years, he never stopped charming the people of Spencer with this enthusiasm, warmth, humility (for a cat), and, above all, his sixth sense about who needed him most. As his fame grew from town to town, then state to state, and finally, amazingly, worldwide, Dewey became more than just a friend; he became a source of pride for an extraordinary Heartland farming town pulling its way slowly back from the greatest crisis in its long history.
Dewey: The Small-Town Library Cat Who Touched the World was a blockbuster bestseller and a publishing phenomenon. It has sold nearly a million copies, spawned three children's books, and will be the basis for an upcoming movie. No doubt about it, Dewey has created a community. Dewey touched readers everywhere, who realized that no matter how difficult their lives might seem, or how ordinary their talents, they can-and should- make a positive difference to those around them. Now, Dewey is back, with even more heartwarming moments and life lessons to share. Dewey's Nine Lives offers nine funny, inspiring, and heartwarming stories about cats--all told from the perspective of "Dewey's Mom," librarian Vicki Myron. The amazing felines in this book include Dewey, of course, whose further never-before-told adventures are shared, and several others who Vicki found out about when their owners reached out to her. Vicki learned, through extensive interviews and story sharing, what made these cats special, and how they fit into Dewey's community of perseverance and love. From a divorced mother in Alaska who saved a drowning kitten on Christmas Eve to a troubled Vietnam veteran whose heart was opened by his long relationship with a rescued cat, these Dewey-style stories will inspire readers to laugh, cry, care, and, most importantly, believe in the magic of animals to touch individual lives.
When Ellie tells Tuffy the family is leaving for the week, Tuffy couldn't be more thrilled. A whole blissful week of rolling around in the flower bed and lounging on top of the TV? Tuffy can't wait! But the cat sitter the family procures doesn't understand Tuffy's refined feline palate, and Little Miss Soppy next door seems intent on dressing Tuffy in a nightie and calling him Janet. To get out of such a terrible mess, Tuffy is going to have to rely on his comical killer instincts.
'Okay, okay. So stick my head in a holly bush.' Tuffy knows what he likes. And he doesn't like the 'art' that Ellie's mum brings home from her new classes. So what's a cat to do? A few scratches here just happen to shred a painting. A nudge there somehow slips a vase off a shelf. Dad hope a horribly lumpy clay pot will be next, but Tuffy's having none of it. The killer cat will go his own sweet way!
The Killer Cat is back for Christmas! A much-loved classic by Anne Fine. So go on, ask me. 'Dear, dear Tuffy. Why was your Christmas so horrible?' Well. I couldn't climb the tree. I couldn't touch the dangly decorations. And Ellie made me part of her sing-along Christmas performance. Horrible, horrible, horrible! But I showed them. I was Tuffy the Acting Cat, superstar. How was I supposed to know things would get so . . . messy? Anne Fine has written numerous highly acclaimed and prize-winning books for children and adults. The Tulip Touch won the Whitbread Children's Book of the Year Award; Goggle-Eyes won the Guardian Children's Fiction Award and the Carnegie Medal; Flour Babies won the Carnegie Medal and the Whitbread Children's Book of the Year; and Bill's New Frock won a Smarties Prize. Anne Fine was named Children's Laureate in 2001 and was awarded an OBE in 2003.
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