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Month in review

Reviews
A. Hall & Co. by Joseph C. Lincoln
Avatar: The Last Airbender: The Search, Part 3 by Gene Luen Yang
Binky Takes Charge by Ashley Spires
Blockhead: The Life of Fibonacci by Joseph D'Agnese
The Brontë Sisters by Catherine Reef
Can You Count to a Googol? by Robert E. Wells
The Chairs Are Where the People Go by Misha Glouberman
Constable and Toop by Gareth P. Jones
The Disappearing Spoon by Sam Kean
Dishwasher by Pete Jordan
Ghost Knight by Cornelia Funke
Going Postal by Terry Pratchett
Home Front Girl by Joan Wehlen Morrison
I Am John I Am Paul by Mark Tedesco
Ichiro by Ryan Inzana
The Legend of Korra: The Art of the Animated Series by Michael Dante DiMartino
Linoleum, Better Babies, and the Modern Farm Woman, 1890-1930 by Marilyn Irvin Holt
Little Bo in Italy by Julie Andrews Edwards
Little Fish: A Memoir from a Different Kind of Year by Ramsey Beyer
Mary-'Gusta by Joseph C. Lincoln
The Notorious Benedict Arnold by Steve Sheinkin
On the Beach by Nevil Shute
The Salaryman's Wife by Sujata Massey
Silent Visions by John Bengtson
Specials by Scott Westerfeld
Squid and Octopus Friends for Always by Tao Nyeu
A State of Change: Forgotten Landscapes of California by Laura Cunningham
Suite Scarlett by Maureen Johnson
The Unusual Suspects by Michael Buckley
Varjak Paw by S.F. Said
The View from the Top by Hillary Frank

Previous month

Rating System

5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish

Reading Challenges

My Kind of Mystery Reading Challenge 2017 February - January 2017-8



Comments for Varjak Paw

Varjak Paw: 03/15/14

cover artWhile Ghost Knight by Cornelia Funke was our Oregon audiobook, Varjak Paw by S.F. Said was our Washington (and specifically, Mt Rainier) book. It is about a young Abyssinian Blue house cat who must leave the safety of the house to find help after the old lady dies.

In terms of basic animal adventure, Varjak Paw reminds me most of Tailchaser's Song by Tad Williams. The history of the Abyssinian Blues is told through a rich oral history — similar to many a creation story but from a feline point of view.

On a more basic level, it is the tale of a cat experiencing the outside. He is in search of a great and fierce creature — a dog — but he doesn't know what a dog is. So he mistakes automobiles for dogs. This is one of many errors he makes on his adventure.

Along the way Varjak becomes aware of a mystery affecting all the alley cats. The cats are going missing. In their place is a horrific replacement. These monstrosities are some of the most disturbing things in a children's audio I've ever heard. But they are an important part of the story.

To make the experience of this audio all the more special, it's performed by George Guidall. Normally I listen to his readings of adult series: The Navajo Mysteries by Tony Hillerman and the Cat Who books by Lilian Jackson Braun. Varjak Paw because of the emphasis on creation myths and spiritual enlightenment and because it is cast with cats, is the prefect blending of Guidall's other work.

Four stars

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