How To Tell If Your Cat Is Plotting To Kill You, by Matthew Inman
This book actually happens to belong to one of my roommates who loves cats except for being allergic to them. While I have seldom had pets in my life, my maternal grandparents did often have pets and included in this tally were various feral cats that found my grandparents congenial and made themselves somewhat at home. Likewise, my father’s side of the family had a practical attitude towards cats that allowed them around as long as they were mousers. At least one of the cats, according to the book, must have thought himself to be a mountain lion because of his tendency to attempt to hunt the large red-tailed hawk that my father had named after me and that was a regular hunter around our family’s farmland as well. To be sure, it is not a challenging book to read, but it is an enjoyable one, well-drawn and full of humorous and witty captions.
The contents of this book are highly variable. Included in them are various mock guides, like the titular “How To Tell If Your Cat Is Plotting To Kill You,” a humorous series of cartoons called “The Bobcats At Work,” which resembles Dilbert in terms of its poking fun at how cats would be like in the office if they had desk jobs. Instead of wasting time online, they would likely spend it licking themselves or glorying over hunting. It is fun to see what cats love—including reflective surfaces which attract unwary birds, and even the weaker concepts, like the foray of the book into cultural politics (how to tell if your cat is gay) and the way that we would act towards cats if we treated them the way they treated us, are not without some humor, even if it is slight. Overall, this is a well-drawn work that is particularly funny.
What kind of people are likely to enjoy a book like this? Well, given the popularity of cats as pets, and the popularity of cat videos and lolcats pictures , it is likely that there are many people who would appreciate a book like this one. I remember once purchasing a book for my stepfather called “101 Uses For A Dead Cat,” as a way of spending money on my food plan that I had to spend before going back to Florida for winter break one time, and this book is a different order of magnitude better as a book than that one. As a funny book, albeit a somewhat crude one (it makes fun of kids being bullied, and uses words like douche and nard a lot), this book is good for a brief laugh and perhaps an occasional flipping through to remind oneself of just how comical cats are. You never know, someday perhaps it may be of practical use, if a cat is trying to kill you, that is. Most of us, fortunately, are not so unlucky.
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