Several years ago prolific, award-winning author Melody Carlson began a tradition of writing a simple yet heartwarming Christmas novella each autumn, just in time for readers to enjoy as December approached. As the years have passed, this tradition remains in place. From stories about puppies and ponies to department store Santa Clauses, Ms. Carlson has taken readers on many inspirational journeys of holiday imagining. The newest addition to this fun tradition is The Christmas Cat, published by Revell in 2014. As per Ms. Carlson’s previous novellas, this book contains all the necessary elements for a pleasant holiday story, including unexpected occurrences in the lives of lonely people, adorable kitty-capers, Christmas wishes come true, and hints of love.
Unexpectedly, The Christmas Cat opens with news of the death of Garrison Brown’s grandmother – and the uncovering of her will which places him as the sole guardian of her beloved cats. Six of them. Seeing how Garrison is dangerously allergic to cats, this poses a problem – but he is willing to do his best to honor his grandmother’s wishes. That means finding the best possible home for each one of the cats, and checking to ensure each prospective family meets a lengthy list of requirements. As time ticks by and Garrison’s stay at his grandmother’s home lengthens, he begins to realize the task may not be as easy as he first hoped. Will each cat find the perfect home before Christmas? And will Garrison ever understand that his grandmother’s final wishes were not a crazy punishment, but instead a beautiful gift?
As readers have come to expect with Melody Carlson’s books, The Christmas Cat is not an overly in-depth or thought provoking tale, nor will the characters, plot, or writing style blow you away with their complexity or vividness. The theme of the story, which seems to center around the importance of holding on to faith and hope, remains a little hazy in its portrayal. On the plus side, however, this book is a quick and easy read, perfect for the busyness of the Christmas season. The wisdom and love of Garrison’s late grandmother is sweet and touching, and the majority of the story focuses on the best sides of the human nature. Most significantly, at the heart of the story are six cats, and one in particular, who will steal your heart – just as they do with their new owners. If you love pets, especially cats, and hold Christmas dear in your heart, The Christmas Cat is sure to bring a smile to your lips this holiday season. If you are like me, you may also want to give each one of your own pets a big, furry hug – because we are reminded of the joy and enrichment that animals add to our lives.
Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
For animal lovers, we thought you might enjoy this special picture of our own Christmas cat, Figaro, and his adoration of the Christmas tree… If only he acted as angelic as he looks in this picture. 😉