Monday, October 27, 2008

Dewey Mania

I can't get enough of Dewey! I spent the weekend with him and felt blue when our time together was done. In case you're not sure who I mean, he is the adorable cat named Dewey Readmore Books who lived in the Spencer Public Library (Iowa) for nineteen years. I've met him before: he was one of the stars of a short film called "Puss in Books", a film I own and often show to visitors. In fact, my husband and I watched it again last night.

Dewey: the Small-town Library Cat Who Touched the World by Vicki Myron with Bret Witter is a word-of-mouth bestseller amongst librarians, and did appear on the New York Times Best Seller list at number 13 during the week of October 5, 2008. The book gives us three interwoven portraits. First and foremost: we get to know the spunky cat who never met a stranger and who so many people adored. There was really something different about him. I think he had a big heart. Number two: we also get to know his "Mom", the author Vicki Myron, who rescued Dewey from the book drop one cold winter morning when he weighed less than a pound. Vicki's life as a librarian and single mom is a big part of the book, including some very tough times in her family history. Third: we become familiar with the town of Spencer itself, a town full of hard-working people with rural roots.

You don't even have to be a cat person to enjoy this book! The unity that one little cat brings to the library staff, to a librarian mother and her daughter, indeed, to a whole town, is phenomenal. During his long life, his story spread round the world, bringing tourists, filmmakers and journalists to this otherwise less-than-famous town. If you can't get your hands on the book right away, check out these links: Hachette Books, Spencer Library and Dewey's FaceBook page.

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