The Feline Mystique: On the Mysterious Connection Between Women and Cats

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9780312268817: The Feline Mystique: On the Mysterious Connection Between Women and Cats

What is it with women and cats? The Feline Mystique is the first serious examination of the intense relationship between woman and their cats and of the repercussions that bond can have on others. Richly researched and searchingly personal, The Feline Mystique uses history, science, art, and literature as touchpoints to explain and explore contemporary women's lives with their cats.

From a glamorous tiger trainer to a feral-cat rescuer, from a show breeder to Simon and her own relationship with the gray longhair Cyrus, this book will introduce you to women both ferocious and nurturing and animals both whimsical and noble. It's a fresh, fascinating exploration of the timeless bond between women and cats, and will deepen your understanding of your relationship with your own feline-be he or she tiger or tabby.

A cat person's answer to Pack of Two and The Secret Life of Dogs, The Feline Mystique is an eye-opening and soul-soothing book for all cat lovers.

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Review:

Part history of a species, part personal memoir, and featuring a healthy dose of wry humor, Clea Simon's The Feline Mystique shares the tale of her particular cat (Cyrus) set against a backdrop of interviews and statistics on cats throughout the world. Smoothly blending mythology with modern stories of dedicated feral cat rescuers, feline fanciers might bond with this book as tightly as they've bonded with their own wee beastie.

The focus is relentlessly female and a happy counterpoint to urban myths and ancient folk tales about lonely women and their up-to-no-good pets. Simon walks us through her initial bond with a young kitten, through the warm years of record-clawing, arm-kneading, keyboard-walking, veterinarian-terrorizing cat companionship, and leads us gently through the sadness of parting with a beloved animal. You won't find practical tips on health care or soapboxes about the problem of strays in the city--just page after page of individualized love and fascination. From Norse goddess Freya and her flying cats to references of a study done on the annual kill of an outdoors-living housecat to an interview with Barnum and Bailey's female tiger tamer, each detail helps construct a solid picture of the multifaceted relationship possible between a woman and her cat. --Jill Lightner

About the Author:

Clea Simon is a Boston-based writer and journalist, who contributes regularly to the Boston Globe, the New York Times, Ms., and a variety of other publications. She is the author of Mad House: Growing Up in the Shadow of Mentally Ill Siblings and Fatherless Women: How We Change After We Lose Our Dads.

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Simon, Clea
Published by St. Martin's Press
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