The Cat Master
April 01 2007
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". . . a delightful blend of wit and insight that brings the animal world into clear and poignant focus . . ."
The Cat Master: An epic adventure with an unforgettable cast.
The Old Cat Master lies dying. Reaching out with his mind, he calls his successor him to rise from the alley and claim his place; he is The Chosen. A malignant force breaks the telepathic connection and Buddy, The Chosen, frets and stirs in his sleep, caught in the grip of a dream he cannot remember, unaware of what is asked of him.
Buddy teaches Zekki and Pris about The Mother who watches and cares for them all and about The Law in their comfortable, warm and safe home where they live with The Boy. Outside prowls a dark shadow with one great gleaming eye burning with hatred and determined to keep Buddy from his rightful place as Cat Master. One night he leaps at the windows, rousing Buddy to tell him that all he loves will be hurt. Buddy, frantic with panic and fear, races around the house, refusing to eat or sleep, anxious for Zekki and Pris. He knows his brother Jett will follow through on his promise. One-eyed Jett has other plans, and he’s not about to let Buddy mess them up again, no matter what it takes or who gets in his way.
In three nights, Buddy must appear at The Gathering and be anointed or Jett, the Old Master’s only other living offspring, will plunge their world into chaos and hatred as he claims the title of Cat Master. Time is running out, but Buddy is not alone.
An epic adventure should be exciting, evoking tears and laughter, lingering long after the last words have been read and the book ended. Such an adventure would keep the stakes high and the timing dancing on a razor’s edge. Bonnie Pemberton accomplishes all this with The Cat Master, and she does it with animals. Everything is at stake: honor, pride, love, passion and the future of a species—the cats, both feral and indoor—and Pemberton makes it work.
From the reluctant Orie, full of bile, who pictures the deaths of all predators to a lecherous dachshund with an eye for the ladies—especially if they’re big German Shepherds—The Cat Master is filled with characters outlined in fine, broad strokes and filled in with minutely fine detail. Pemberton’s prose is a delightful blend of wit and insight that brings the animal world into clear and poignant focus, matching predator and prey, enemy and friend in a journey that leaves death and destruction in its wake.
Passion and pathos counterbalance a taste of romance, danger, and deep sorrow within the bonds of friendship and loyalty. All forged in the heat of battle and in the face of great personal danger, Pemberton creates a tale of mythic proportions.
Reviewer: J. M. Cornwell