This is a nice, quiet, cozy, enjoyable book about Dewey Readmore Books, who served as the Spencer Public Library’s cat for most of his 19 years of life. Dewey was a unique cat, who loved people and seemed to take to his job as “ambassador” quite well. He was also a gorgeous cat – the cat on the cover is actually him. He looks a lot like my cat Sneakers, if Sneakers were orange instead of black and white, which meant I had a soft spot already for him.
The author is very good at describing Dewey’s antics. She has a way of talking about animals that is very nice; not just about Dewey, but about any animal. She has a clean, simple way of writing. I think this book was at its best when it was about Dewey, not about the library board or the city council or her own family.
She writes a lot about her struggles when she first moves to Spencer and about her family, and it felt somewhat out of place in a book about a library cat. I felt like skipping ahead a lot during her personal memoirs. At one point she says that her father specifically asked her not to write about one incident, but she puts it in the book anyway. It wasn’t related to Dewey; it wasn’t even related to her time in Spencer. It wasn’t necessary. However, the parts about Dewey are cute enough to make up for the boring parts.
Although cute, the bits about Dewey in the library seemed romanticized to me. She kind of glossed over the allergies issue, and maybe I’m just jaded (I work in a library), but I wouldn’t let a cat anywhere near quite a few library patrons. I can’t believe Dewey never hissed or struck out at a patron.
The ending did not make me cry.