Friday, September 10, 2010

Vintage Feline Appeal

I haven’t grown accustomed yet to haunting e-bookstores. Although I buy books online regularly, I still enjoy searching for rare finds the old-fashioned way. My sister, Marcy, is a very busy woman—always at the helm of her command center for communications—yet she, too, succumbs to sleuthing in bookstores and at garage sales.

This past summer, Marcy frequented the New Orleans Symphony Book Fair, a longtime treasure trove for bibliophiles in “The Big Easy.” Marcy found a winner from 1964: The Silent Miaow, a book that, according to its author, Paul Gallico, is “translated from the feline.”

Marcy purchased this charming, one-of-a-kind book for $1.50 and donated it to my Cat Lady library. It’s hard to say if I would have bought this publication as an e-book, based exclusively on the title. The delightful photographs by Suzanne Szasz, the sensitive and witty prose by the “writer-cat,” and the musty smell of the yellowed pages contribute to a memorable reading experience. The book also is inscribed in perfect penmanship, "Not that Max can learn anything from this, but thought you and Dan might."--Katharine

I like holding the physical book in my hands, and I’m not convinced that a Kindle or an iPad could capture the vintage appeal of The Silent Miaow.

In the foreword, Mr. Gallico writes that “in the very existence of this book we have a most concrete example of the manner in which at least one of these marvelous creatures, acquiring both an editor and publisher, has advanced the eventual complete feline take-over of the human race.” Right and write on!

And who can resist this photo from the book of a Cat Lady wearing a leopard top and cat’s-eye glasses as she gazes affectionately at “the author”? I love the look and know the feeling.

Query of the Day: Could your cat write a book?

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