Another 5-star review for Charm! #books, #cats, #readers, #libraries, #bookworm.
Sometimes a certain animal is meant to be with a certain person; that definitely seems to be the case in this cute and touching story. The tale is full of contrasts, one could even say contradictions, but that’s part of the reason that I loved it so much —there are some interesting conclusions that one can draw from such contrasts. For example, no one in the story has a name other than simply father, mother, brother or aunt. Similarly, the author is known only as “I”. The only beings that do have names are the two black cats, each named Charm in turn. What to make of that?
Then there’s the fact that the author deeply loved her dear cat Charm but seemed unconcerned about him escaping all the time, escaping to obvious and likely dangers. If you love someone (or something), set it free… I suppose, but somehow I don’t believe this is the intention or the meaning here. The author implies in her introductory statements that if something (or someone) comes too easily into your life, it may just as easily be lost. How many times have you let a good thing slip through your hands for much the same reason?
She seems to be quite the animal lover, but then surprises us with talk about making an animal sacrifice, to another animal of all things—proposing to take the life of a rooster in this case. Perhaps under great stress we all bend our beliefs a bit— a normal response to a particularly harrowing experience. That seems to be a minor theme throughout the story. So was disappointment in its various presentations; disappointment with being lied to, the disappointment of failure, and disappointment with being let down by the people closest to her. The cute little cat with a mind of his had come to teach her so many things!
There was one passage in the story that puzzled me greatly. Here it is: “Besides, according to my count, [XYZ] occurred on September 30, my brother’s birthday. I was fighting off dismal thoughts about what had happened and was going crazy until I found out.” Hmm… and I am still waiting to find out what she found out if anything!
I very much enjoyed this short story. It all hangs together nicely and left me feeling very satisfied if ever so slightly puzzled. It made me think, which is what most makes me remember a book or not. Memorable book!