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home : features : the bookshelf November 20, 2014

9/25/2013 6:00:00 AM
A Street Cat Named Bob available at the library
Rosita Smith

James was a busker (a street musician) on the streets of London.

Buskers carve out their own small domain where they play and sing for a few coins that are dropped into their guitar case. It's a hard way to earn your dinner. Many of the buskers turn to drugs to appease the tummy trembles.

Coming home one night to his fifth floor pad James came across a pair of eyes sunken into the stair wall watching him carefully. Investigation revealed that the eyes belonged to a orange tabby cat which showed signs of having been in cat fight. James took the cat in, cleaned him up and found some tidbits for him to eat. Later on, looking back, James realized that this was the first time in over 10 years that he had thought about someone else's trouble and needs.

James named the cat Bob. James got a litter box for Bob's use. Bob refused to use it. Instead he would run down the five flights of stairs, go outside to do his business, then return to the flat five stories up. Watching how humans discarded their bathroom waste, Bob figured out how he too, when in need, could use the toilet and avoid that five-floor trip.

James would take Bob along when he went buskering. Bob would settle down on James' shoulder and watch the people whiz by. Many would stop and leave a nice tip in his guitar case. With Bob in tow James' daily income increased.

James credits Bob with saving his life. For some 10 years James roamed free, with no responsibilities and drugs available whenever he wanted them. With Bob he had to take responsibility for Bob's care and wellbeing. Tired of the life he had been living James, with Bob at his side, turned himself around and is now drug free.

Sensing a good tale literary agent, Mary Pachnos encouraged James to write his story - and what a story it has turned out to be! The book climbed the bestseller list in many countries, and the pair's fame has skyrocketed. Over 350,000 copies have been sold in the UK and it has been published in over 25 languages.

You can watch the pair on YouTube, T@StreetCatBob; F StreetCatBob; and Originally published in Great Britain A Street Named Bob - And How He Saved My Life has crossed the pond and landed on our shores for us to read and enjoy.

A Street Cat Named Bob - And How He Saved My Life is on the Palo Verde Valley Library's new book biography shelf under B Bowen.

If you have enjoyed Marley and Me; Dewey The Small Town Library Cat; A Dog's Purpose or any of the other animal stories that have been published recently, you will find A Street Cat Named Bob - And How He Saved My Life straight out of the British Aisles delightful reading. Plan to check this easy reading book soon.

Library hours: Monday through Friday, 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. at 125 W. Chanslorway, Blythe, 760-922-5371.

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