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10 Literary Kitties to Purr Over

BY Anna Walker

1st Jan 2015 Book Reviews

10 Literary Kitties to Purr Over

Authors and cats have gone hand in hand since the days of Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics, and as the ever witty Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) notes, they’ve certainly never forgotten their once Godly status. Here are our top 10 literary kitties.


10. Mog – Judith Kerr 

Image Source: Lakeland Children's Books

Poor old Mog has been through the mill. The star of no less than 17 books charting her furry exploits, the forgetful feline has had to put up with Christmas, babies, rabbits, foxes, kittens, badly behaved grandmas, her fear of the dark and plenty more before finally coming to rest in Goodbye Mog after over 30 years at the heart of English children’s picture books. Sob.


9. Harry Potter – JK Rowling 

Image Source: Blithesea

Any book about witches and wizards is contractually obligated to feature some black cats. So JK Rowling was really breaking the mold when she introduced readers to Crookshanks and Mrs Norris, a giant ginger ‘monster’ and a scrawny tattletale tabby that many students would dearly love to ‘give a good kick’.


8. Kafka on the Shore - Haruki Murakami 

Image Source: Haruki-Murakami.com 

Due to his uncanny cat-communication skills, the elderly Nakata finds part time work as a finder of lost cats. The case of one particular moggy however, leads him down a path that will take him far from his home for the first time in his life…Murakami is famously a cat lover, and has described himself writing with a cat on his lap and a beer in his hand.


7. The Cat in the Hat – Dr Seuss 

Image Source: My Child Malaysia

This mischievous creature turned up unannounced and wrecked the house of Sally and her brother, much to their delight (and the outrage of a very sensible goldfish).
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6. Breakfast at Tiffany’s – Truman Capote 

Image Source: Breakfast at Tiffany's

Holly Golightly’s Cat is described as a ‘poor slob without a name’. The pair just ‘took up by the river one day’, and her feline friend comes to represent her reluctance to put down roots, or belong to anybody. The cat actor for the film adaptation, Orangey, was somewhat notorious in Hollywood with a reputation as ‘the world’s meanest cat’ for his tendency to bite and scratch his costars.
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5. The Master and Margarita – Mikhail Bulgakov 

Image Source: The Affair

As large as a hog, demonically black and with the power to speak and walk on two legs, Bulgakov’s chess and vodka loving cat has a penchant for sarcasm! His name, Behemoth, could refer to the legendary Biblical monster, though it is also Russian for hippopotamus…


4. Atticus Claw - Jennifer Gray 

Image Source: Fun Kids Live

Atticus Grammaticus Cattypuss Claw is the world's greatest cat burglar who, over the course of the series of books, becomes the world’s greatest police cat!


3. Alice in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll 

Image Source: Disney Wikia

Though not the only cat in Carroll’s wonderland, the Cheshire Cat is certainly the most memorable. ‘You’re mad, I’m mad, we’re all mad here’ he teasingly tells the confused Alice, as he gradually disappears, leaving behind nothing but his grin…
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2. The Guest Cat – Takashi Hiraide 

Image Source: The Guest Cat

Everyone knows a cat like this. The guest cat actually belongs to somebody else, but comes to your house for food and a few cheeky naps. As a beautiful feline invites herself into the homes of a Japanese couple, days seem to be filled with more colour and light in this surprise bestseller.
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1. Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats – TS Eliot 

Image Source: Pixgood

‘Before a cat will condescend

To treat you as a trusted friend,

Some little token of esteem

Is needed, like a dish of cream.’

The basis for the musical Cats, this collection of poems about feline psychology and sociology by TS Eliot has delighted cat lovers the world over for over 75 years.
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Bonus Book: The Unadulterated cat - Terry Pratchett

Image Source: Books Gid

Enough of fictional moggies, if it’s a real cat you’re after look no further than Terry Pratchett’s hilarious volume, The Unadulterated Cat. This ‘Campaign for Real Cats’ sets out to expose the boring, mass produced and 'purr-fect' pussycats that appear in adverts for what they really are: fakes!

Real cats never wear flea collars, or appear on Christmas cards, or chase anything with a bell on it. Real cats eat quiche, and giblets, and butter. They don’t need names, though they often get called them. ‘Yaargeroooutofityarbastard’ usually does nicely.
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