Monday, December 9, 2019

Catnapstories: The Adventures of Vince the Cat, A Beautifully Illustrated and Educational Trilogy by Heidi Bryant

Having traveled extensively throughout her life, author Heidi Bryant decided to combine her love of cats, her passion for languages and travel into storytelling. The result? A beautiful, fun and educational trilogy, Catnapstories, that star a darling gray kitty named Vince and are named The Adventures of Vince the Cat.


Go along with Vince (and some other kitties and humans) as they explore the world! You will also learn in the first book how Vince came to live with Heidi (yes, the author is a character in the series!)

The first stop is Paris, and as you would guess, the first book in the series is Vince Goes to Paris. Among many interesting things in this book  is there are actual sentences spoken in the language of the country being featured in the book. The book isn't entirely written in French, but there ARE full sentences printed in French with translations. You will also find words/definitions of French words used in the back of the book. 


See the gray kitty in the picture? That is Vince, in my opinion he shares a striking resemblance to my Cody! I bet Cody would have LOVED to join Vince on his travels. Imagine all that he would have learned! Please take a moment and watch this short videos that follow each book title  and see for yourself how charming the entire series is!




The second stop is India, 
Vince Discovers the Golden Triangle. 

"This story takes you on a journey to one of the most incredible places in the world; India. 

A vast, beautiful, culturally diverse and ancient land. 

In this adventure Vince visits some of the most famous and beautiful sites. Sampling the local cuisine and meeting endangered animals. He experiences an amazing and colourful Hindu festival, plays elephant polo, and eventually discovers the Golden Triangle."



The third (and we bet not the final stop) is Seville!

Vince Discovers the Wonder of Seville


"This story immerses you into Spanish culture and Castellano - the official language of Spain. 


Set in springtime in the beautiful and historic city of Seville in Andalusia, Spain. Heidi, Vince and Adele rescue a beautiful little kitten from a precarious situation, visit the Plaza de Toros, meet some wonderful new friends and learn to dance flamenco as well as experience many other delights in this wonderful city."



Author Heidi Bryant lives in London and to say she is well-traveled is an understatement! She speaks French, German and Spanish. In 2018 she started learning Italian! What deeply touched me was that Heidi had the idea to write The Adventures of Vince the Cat when she lost her beloved cat Mikki to old age the summer of 2018. As you would expect, Heidi was devastated and in order to keep the memories of Mikki and her other beautiful cats  that she had past and present in the forefront, she decided to write the stories with the cats as the main characters. There is an enormous amount of love that comes through the pages of each book. The love encompasses the countries/cultures being featured, as well as for the cats in the stories.

Heidi hopes that children will love reading these stories many times! She hopes to educate children about other cultures, languages and customs in different countries. The stories are geared for children ages 4 to 11 but in my opinion I would say they are better suited to children ages 7 to 11.



I  LOVE that these books are just slightly larger than the length and width of my entire hand...and are approx 50 something pages each. The size of the books is endearing to me and I think that children will enjoy holding them because the size makes them easy to transport, plus the size is unique.

These "beautifully illustrated stories to inspire the next generation" are sure to inspire the little ones in your life. These would be a marvelous addition to your holiday gift purchases for the younger set. Have no little ones? Gift a neighbor's child, doctor's office, school library, the elementary teachers in your life and more with this lovely trilogy. After all, it is the "season of giving" and how much fun would it be to "pay it forward" especially if you do NOT have children? I am going to gift my series to a special elementary school teacher that I know for her fifth graders.

You can also find Vince on Facebook and Instagram

Oh and because this is a TRILOGY, Cody and I give this 12 kitty paws up!!!

Ok, so there are five paws there, but you get the idea!

In full disclosure: we were sent the trilogy in exchange for our always honest review. We were not monetarily compensated for this review. A special THANK YOU for being so kind as to ship the entire trilogy across the pond....and...in RECORD TIME!!! Lots of love from Cody and I!

Monday, December 2, 2019

Cat Book :Journey Home: A Cat's Tale by Russell H. Plante

"All the things that happen to us,
are important in making us who we are."



   When I was approached by author Russell H. Plante asking if I would review his book Journey Home: A Cat's Tale, after hearing the premise I was intrigued. There were things that reminded me of my Angel Bobo whom I had rescued huddling beneath a car in a driving blizzard,  shivering and cold. I had seen him earlier that day, watching as he scaled a 6 ft chain link fence in the bitter cold. My ex and I were leaving to go away and couldn't take him then. When we returned 6 hours later I went to check to see if he was sitting under the car we saw him run to after scaling the fence and sure enough he was there. The rest is history. After a search for his previous owners that provided nothing, Bobo remained with me for 18 years. I always wondered what his story was, and what his life was like in the 6 months he was alive before he found me. I knew I had to read this book. Parts of this thought-provoking and heart-warming story are true.

An Excerpt: "It's freezing cold and the bitter wind precipitates a chill factor well below zero. My whiskers are like frozen icicles, plastered against my face....a deep voice from within my past whispers quietly to me-reminding me....Survive."

"This is a story based upon the actual life of a cat found abandoned in a dumpster, left to die, with his leg caught in a trap. Born in a small town on the coast of Maine, an unpretentious cat named 'Patches' encounters life changing experiences during his first two years. His siblings are given away, his father abandons him and his mother without explanation, and he's discarded by an uncaring owner and left homeless without food or shelter. As he wanders the streets to piece his life back together, he discovers new friends like Chester, a relocated cat from New York City, who helps him to find food and shelter:

Chester taught me just about everything he could think of in order to help me survive and deal with my new environment. He taught me how to observe the things around me, how to fight if I needed to, how to understand myself better by putting myself in the place of others and treating them as I would want to be treated, and how to be a good and decent cat."

The dialogue between Patches and his friends is often funny. I appreciated reading dialogue from a cat that was spoken in the way I imagine that cats would speak, INTELLIGENTLY, not in a baby talk sort of a way that is often attributed to cats. In my opinion if a cat could speak in the way humans speak, a cat would speak intelligently and sure wouldn't be speaking babytalk....but I digress. The dialogue is often deeply philosophic and inspiring. Inspiring us to think about how all that has happened in OUR lives has shaped us into who we are today. 




     "This is a story about Patches’ journey from homelessness to finding a new life. It’s a story about losing his sisters and finding them once again and his experiences as he acquires friends, starting from the sad reality of his abandonment on a late September afternoon and continuing into the bleak months of fall and winter in New England.  His journey defines who he becomes as he learns to survive. The realities of life he experiences translate into many lessons from which we all can learn."

One lesson is that when we lose a friend we shouldn't think of it as a loss per se, Patches learned that " even though friends leave, you don't really lose them, they are always there, within you. Even though you may not see them as often, you always have the memories of your experiences with them. That's something you can always cherish."

 Journey Home "is a novel that encourages hope and connects us with each other in order to help us see the complexities faced by others. It is a story of hope, a sense of helplessness and despair, the loss of innocence, and conviction – never giving up, no matter the circumstance.  It imparts an insight to appreciate the meaning of friendship, to always move forward, and to evaluate situations before passing judgement."

"Each of us encounters obstacles during our lives, some more than others. There is uncertainty in everyone's life. Mine is no exception. I am who I am today because of both the good and bad things that have happened in my life. I guess we all have a better understanding of our lives as we age. I don't profess to know all of the answers, not even as I become more aware of life as I get older. But you must persist and give life a chance to work itself out."

If you are looking for a thought-provoking, touching, deeply sensitive and philosophical read that will draw you in and not release you until the very last page, I urge you to add this deeply touching book to your ever-growing cat library. It is simply beautiful. I had a few tears at the end (happy tears), I also had a few chills. I smiled, I cried, but most of all I was happy that I jumped on the opportunity to read this most beautiful story. It is my wish that you will do the same! 

Purchase  on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, etc.
 Also, on the author's  website at www.russellhplante.com.
Facebook:www.facebook.com/russellhplante


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Russell Plante is an Engineering Physicist with a diverse engineering and academic background in Engineering Physics, Electrical Engineering, and Business Administration.  He has held positions as a systems engineer with Automation Industries, Inc., a project engineer in Kalwall Corp's Solar Division, and Department of Defense Branch Head in Control Engineering, Welding Engineering, and Quality Control Engineering Analysis.  While at the DOD, he was appointed by the University of Maine to advise and assist the Physics Department in providing an industrial perspective for quality education.  A skilled technical writer, he is a previously published author and has received awards for Solar Building Engineering Design from the State of Maine Office of Energy Resources and from the U.S. Department of Energy for Energy Innovation Technologies.


Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Thankful for the Here and Now



I decided to post our Thanksgiving post a day early, since tomorrow many of you will be busy with family, and I will be watching the loser Lions play, then I will be enjoying dinner with family following the game.  This year I am feeling grateful for the here and now. I want to keep this post from going down a dark road, so I will keep this short. Both Dakota and Cody are having some health issues that are in limbo right now, (which is why I am not around as much reading blog posts or posting on ours as I would like to be, along with the fact that many of your blogs stopped coming via email weeks ago, but that's an entirely different story). Dakota's blood pressure was up again (a few times after having been normal in August), and we will find out what our next steps will be, and we are waiting to find out some test results for Cody that we won't know for a few weeks. Cody has dropped from almost 11 lbs to 9.8 pounds since Spring (he was 10.4 lbs a month ago). I am hoping it is a thyroid issue because that is treatable.  He also has a slight heart murmur. Cody is eating like crazy (has been since Spring and I wondered then if he had a thyroid issue), and he is fine in every other way, so paws crossed with both boys their issues will be treatable. So, this year, with both of my boys having things going on I am grateful every moment for the time we have with them. 

Sending lots of love!


Monday, November 25, 2019

Cat Life: Celebrating the History, Culture & Love of the Cat by Award-Winning Author, Amy Shojai

Courtesy of Amy Shojai

It is with great delight that I was able to get my paws on  an advance copy of Cat Life:Celebrating the History, Culture & Love of the Cat by renowned pet expert/author, Amy Shojai. I have always been smitten with Amy's writing, as well as her musical talent and her knowledge of cats and dogs. I have had the pleasure of meeting her in person on several occasions, and she is as delightful, brilliant, colorful, exciting and knowledgeable in person as she is through her writing.

It is easy to become smug when you have been reading cat books for over 10 years as I have (and many of you have as well),  thinking "What more could ANYONE possibly have to say to enlighten me further about cats?"

Well dear readers, Amy Shojai has done it again. Her expository book about cats has taught me more than I  could have imagined! 


Courtesy of Amy Shojai


The 150+ stunning color photographs, are captivating and simply exquisite. You will want to look at them again and again. This book reveals virtually everything needed to appreciate this mysterious, lovable companion. It is a book that you will want to re-visit on numerous occasions. 


From shojai.com "Though a cat may choose to share her affection with a human or two, she will always remain that quixotic mix of unpredictability and individuality that challenges the understanding of the most patient among us. It is as if they know that when they first stepped into the human ring of firelight, they forever altered our history, influencing our religions, our literature, our art—our very lives.” –From the Introduction



Chapter One, “Evolutionary Cat,” traces the domestic feline back to the Paleocene Era, then introduces its big cat relatives. Many of us know that several cats together is called a "clowder", but I never knew they can also be called a "cluster" or "clutter" of cats as well! Even Cody was captivated by the information!


I also never knew that the African wildcat is considered the most like our own domestic breeds "and is probably the founding father of the cat that is even now warming on your hearth."

Chapter Two, “Cultured Cat,” "is a survey of artistic homage paid to the cat. From Aesop’s fables to Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland, cats have been featured as analogy, metaphor, and hero."

"There used to be a kind of cheese made in Cheshire marked with a grinning cat face on one end. Is this where Lewis Carroll's wonderful Cheshire Cat came from?"

There are references to cats in Television, in ads, lore and legend about cats, and a plethora of other information about cats in culture.

Chapter Three, “Physical Cat,” is a guide to understanding and caring for your cat. There is information about the cat's eye, their hunting instinct,  feeding, play, health issues  I learned so much about a variety of health issues that cats may have that I had never known before. 


Cat Life closes with a “Gallery of Breeds,” a parade of fascinating cat types with descriptions of their unique personalities and special characteristics. There is also a listing of various cat associations and you can find a fabulous reading list so you may purchase other books that Amy has written as well.

Check out the beautiful Cat Life video, you will want to order your copy NOW!!




 FROM THE INTRODUCTION:

This book is for cat lovers everywhere. It is intended as both a basic guide for the neophyte cat addict and a supplement for veteran feline fans. It is my hope that these pages will delight and amuse, surprise and educate, and, most of all, celebrate the mysteries and marvels of all the wonderful cats that share our lives.

FROM THE BACK COVER:

"informative and fun, Cat Life celebrates your love and affection for big cats, stray cats, pedigree beauties, and everything CAT."

That it does Amy, that it does, and sooo beautifully! Cat Life is a book that all of YOU, my fellow cat lovers MUST have as part of your cat library. It's just in time for holiday gifting too!



Set to release in December. It will be available in paperback, hardcover on DECEMBER 1.

Amazon and Barnes & Noble for pre-order

It will be available on KINDLE on DECEMBER 8 and is already on KINDLE pre-order at this link:





Preview of Amy Shojai's latest gift book for cat lovers, with interior page spreads--and audio from her original show STRAYS, the Musical. https://shojai.com/books/cat-life/ (you can order the book there as well!)

Author: Amy Shojai
Genre: Cat Books
Tags: cat behaviorcat care
ASIN: B07YDYQLX5
ISBN: 9781948366144

Courtesy of
https://shojai.com/


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:


Award-winning author Amy Shojai is a certified animal behavior consultant, and the award-winning author of more than 30 bestselling pet books She is also a playwright and co-author of STRAYS, THE MUSICAL and the author of the critically acclaimed September & Shadow petcentric thriller series. 


I was not compensated for this review. I was sent an advance copy of Cat Life in exchange for my always honest review.

Monday, November 18, 2019

It's A Cat Amazing STACKS Warehouse Blowout Sale! (While Supplies Last!)





If you are a regular reader of our blog, you KNOW we are HUGE fans of the Cat Amazing products (in fact they were part of our 10th Blogoversary post and we have featured them NUMEROUS times prior to that!), and today we are thrilled to present a CATABULOUS SALE to you of EPIC PAWPORTIONS!!!!

It's the Cat Amazing STACKS WAREHOUSE BLOWOUT SALE! Just in time for the holidays too!


THE CAT AMAZING STACKS ARE:

"INFINITELY STACKABLE!"

you can combine kits to make all sorts of configurations

SUPER STURDY

made out of industrial strength Ultraboard

EASY TO ASSEMBLE!



Our friends at Cat Amazing are moving to a new warehouse and they don't want to take everything with them! This means GOOD NEWS FOR YOU!!!

They are offering their Cat Amazing Stacks at 52% OFF! 

That's right 52% OFF (BUT ONLY WHILE SUPPLIES LAST!!) And.........you can get an additional $10 off by USING the code CODY10 AT CHECKOUT!

CLICK ABOVE TO GET YOURS!!



What are you waiting for?
 Hurry on over and get YOURS NOW!!!!


REMEMBER YOU CAN GET   52% OFF (BUT ONLY WHILE SUPPLIES LAST!!) And.........you can get an additional $10 off by USING the code CODY10 AT CHECKOUT!


CLICK ABOVE TO GET YOURS!!
AND GRAB A FEW
FOR SOME SHELTERS
AND SOME KITTY FRIENDS TOO! 






Full Disclosure: If you order using the above link, Cody might get a little something to add to his NOMS fund!
 
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