Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Book Review - How to Massage Your Cat

by Alice M. Brock

Book Reviewer: Max

When I first read this title, I gotta tell you, I thought it was just crazy. Who is the least tense, most relaxed of the animal kingdom? Right, we are. I mean, how often have you encountered a feline friend fraught with angst. Rarely? Am I right? So, I thought the premise for this book was off base.

Wanting to be fair, however, I consulted with Lindsey and Noodles for outside opinions, and they said that they might not be adverse to trying a little massage. On their recommendation, I read the book cover-to-cover to determine it's efficacy.

Know what I found? It's worth little as a massage book -- I mean, tell your humans not to try this at home; they could hurt your limbs. However, the value of it comes in the form of humor.

I think this book is one of those that humans give to each other just for fun. You know, it's that gift for the pet owner who has everything.

In reviewing the illustrations, drawn by the author, I realized -- or should I say I prayed -- that no one would actually massage their prized feline in such a manner. The massage appears to more closely resemble the kneading of tough dough rather than anything of therapeutic value. Here's a passage from the book that will sum this up. "...gently flip cat over onto its back and direct a volley of rapid slaps to the midriff..."

Okay, so either this is a humorous book or the author has never had a cat. Honey, if you deliver "a volley of rapid slaps" to my midriff, you won't live to write another book.

That being said. All-in-all, the book is very cute, the drawings fun and the text easy to read (I mean you'll read it in 20 minutes or less). How to Massage Your Cat was originally written in 1985 and the most recent version has a copyright of 2003, and it's still on sale. Whew... anything that lasts more than 20 years must have something going for it.

About the author: Alice M. Brock used to own Alice's Restaurant of the Arlo Guthrie song and movie fame. She has also written a children's book Mooses Come Walking with Arlo himself. She admits How to Massage Your Cat is a spoof on self-help and how-to books.

On a scale of 5, I give How to Massage Your Cat 3 Paws based on the humor factor.