The Travelling Cat Chronicles by Hiro Arikawa

This is one of those books you just keep hearing about, the kind of book that’s always front row center on those beautifully curated Goodreads lists. You know, those lists that should be titled Great Books You Should Read Right Now, You Uncultured Genre-Reading Swine. (Yeah, yeah, yeah, I’ll get to The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo eventually. Stop bugging me, geeeeeeez.)

Anyway. The Goodreads people might be on to something, since The Travelling Cat Chronicles is an adorable, touching read. If you’re wary of reading a translated book, fear not. Philip Gabriel is the translator, which means you are in excellent hands; for those who don’t know, Gabriel also translates for Japanese lit legend Haruki Murakami.

The premise is that Nana, a cat with a whole lotta attitude, is heading on a road trip alongside his human owner, Satoru. Why are they traveling, you might ask? The answer is revealed in time; this book is wholly about the journey and the people they meet along the way. That last sentence sounds way too wholesome for my normal (secretly gagging over here) but it’s accurate, I swear.

The book is very artfully written. I never thought I could admire head-hopping, but Arikawa knows what’s up—this is head-hopping with a purpose. I honestly don’t have one complaint. (Stunned.) So if you are a cat person, are looking for a palate cleanser, or like odd and adorable Japanese stuff, this is a must-read.

A small aside—if you haven’t seen the book trailer for Specter yet, check it out! Specter debuts July 7th, and the paperback and ebook are available for preorder at all major retailers and from Hidden Bower Press.

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