Dewey: The Small Town Library Cat Who Touched the World. Vicki Myron with Bret Witter. 2008. Pages: 224. [Source: I borrowed it from the library]
Now, I read this one before I went and read The Rings of Time, but it wasn't until now that I realised that it wouldn't be all that bad if I reviewed this one. I mean, its about a cat! A lovable, adorable, personable cat! When I saw someone on a blog was going to read it, I knew I had to go and find a copy. I had relatively given up finding it (actually, it was more like I had forgotten about it), but then I found it when I was looking for books about ducks, which my brother needed for a project. It was in the section filled with non-fiction books about cats.
I read the reviews on the back-side of the jacket, and I knew that the ending was going to be sad, but I borrowed it anyway.
The story of Dewey starts out on a cold winter's morning in 1988. Vicki, the author, heard something in the book drop in the staff room and went to investigate. And there she found a tiny, orange and white kitten, buried under a pile of books. After Vicki pulled him from that cold, metal box, she let him soak up her warmth, and then she let him meet the rest of the staff. After that meeting, Dewey fell in love with everyone and became one of the most people-loving cats I have have heard or read about.
I love cats. I love cats so much and everyone knows it. I have three cats to my name - Pebbles, Domino, and Marcelle - my Nintendo Network ID is 'CatCrazyAuthor', and next spring I plan to start a cat-exclusive kennel for northern- and central-Alberta. So, when I read about Dewey, I instantly connect to him and fell in love with him. It made me wonder why I had never heard about him - he died in 2006, when I was 11 years old. I love cats so much, have all my life (I grew up with one named Muffy until I was 9. She ran away one morning and I never saw her again).
According to this lovely memoir to a lovely cat, he got quite famous. So why had never heard of him before I read this book? I'll have to ask about it.
Some people in the small town of Spencer, Iowa (small? Spencer had 10,000 people during Dewey's lifetime. Does that mean that my hometown is small too? We only have 8,000 or something residents), had a problem with Dewey being in the library, which I find rediculous. I don't know why some people don't cats. It's a mystery that will never be discovered I guess. People worried if he would pose as an allergy problem to some. Dewey loved boxes, etc. You'd have to read the book in order to learn everything about the 'Dewkster' (or 'Dewey Deedamore Booksa' - I think. I may be wrong).
Throughout the book there are chapters about Vicki and how she came to be the head librarian at the Spencer Library. I kind of found it strange since the book was supposed to be about Dewey, but helped to explain how much Dewey meant to Vicki and how much Dewey saw Vicki as 'Mommy'.
I'd give this book the rating of 'A Good Uplifting Read For Someone Who Needs a Good Pick-Me-Up'. Make sure you are alone when you read the ending, though, if you don't want someone to overhear you crying, lol. My mother asked me why my eyes were glassy and red-rimmed when I emerged from my room to find and cuddle my cat after I was done.
I don't like crying because it makes my face blotchy and my head ache, but Dewey's story was worth it. I don't think I've cried over something in a book since I read the beginning of the first Mandy story, but oh well.