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Tuesday, 5 June 2012

James Bowen - A Street Cat Named Bob

review by showhost June 2012.
James Bowen had lived on the streets of London. It's 2007 and 30yr old James has a little council flat and is on a rehab programme, trying to kick the Heroin addiction. James is busking in the city of London and his life changes one day when he returns to his flat and finds a ginger tomcat sitting on the mat by the door of one of the downstairs flats. James feels sorry for the cat as it is thin, balding in places and hungry but assumes the owner will be back soon to take it in. But next day tomcat is in the same place. After establishing that it doesn't belong to anyone in the flats, James takes it in. He feeds and cares for the injured cat, using his busking money to get medical care from the RSPCA & Blue Cross. He names the cat Bob. Bob slowly starts to follow James when he goes to work on the streets, either sitting on James' shoulder or on a lead (originally a shoelace).
It was a sudden realisation that Bob was drawing attention, everybody wanted to meet Bob, stroke him, pet him, take pictures of him. James had people talking to him which was quite a phenomenon for him. Bob became James' reason to be. Bob became his rock and his friend, someone to care for and protect on the often hostile streets of London. Also, a reason to really kick the drug addiction. One man and his cat!
The book was good. It was an inspirational story and Bob is an amazing cat (every home should have one!).
But, towards the end I was starting to get a little tired of the repitions though. Yes, you said countless times how you were coming off heroin, that your dad didn't want to know you etc. And at one point I thought, ok so you knew you were going to cause aggro by going to the tube station at Covent Gardens with the certain morons who worked there or the statue people who's patch it was - then why go in the first place!!?!
But, everyone should read this book for the message it conveys - there is always hope.

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