Thank you so much to Penguin Random House and Doubleday Books for my free advance copy – all opinions are my own.
“Life, be it human or feline, doesn’t always work out the way you think it will.”
Satoru runs into a stray cat from time to time and ultimately starts to leave food outside for him on a regular basis. When the cat runs into trouble, Satoru decides to adopt him and names him Nana. After several years, Satoru suddenly decides to take Nana on a road trip to see old friends and to find a new home for his beloved cat. Together, they take a journey across Japan to revisit his past and old friends, and over time we as readers learn why he can no longer keep Nana.
“EEEEK! Nana! You did it again!’
I’d removed every single tissue from the box and was sitting quietly in the corner contemplating the result of my actions.
‘You don’t use them, so why did you take them out?’
This book is translated from Japanese by Philip Gabriel, who did a fantastic job. The writing style took a bit for me to get used to, as the point of view changes often from chapter to chapter, but ultimately it is this style that makes the novel succeed. I was skeptical as to how one can write from a cat’s perspective and not sound, well, silly, but this is how it’s done! My favorite parts of the book were from Nana’s point of view. This cat is sometimes snarky, but always cute, and certainly cleverly written. The points of view of Satoru and Nana switch back and forth seamlessly. Nana’s inner monologue made me laugh out loud because it just seemed so realistic. I kept looking at my own cats wondering if they were thinking the same thing!
Although the story centers on Satoru and Nana’s relationship, it also shows how the relationships of his past shaped who he is today. Satoru is such an endearing character – I adored him. This is a very heartwarming story and can’t believe how much it got to me. This is not a typical read for me – I’m usually not sappy nor a crier, but I have to admit, I ugly-cried at the end. I highly recommend this novel to cat lovers, pet lovers, and lovers of a good story alike. While the story starts off somewhat basic, by the second half, it will hit you.
I rated this ADORABLE book 5 / 5 stars!
*Released in the UK on November 2, 2017 – Click here to purchase from Amazon
*Due for release in the US on April 19, 2018