Monday, December 14, 2015

BOOK REVIEW: Dewey: The Small-Town Library Cat Who Touched the World by Vicki Myron


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ABOUT THE BOOK (from Amazon):

How much of an impact can an animal have? How many lives can one cat touch? How is it possible for an abandoned kitten to transform a small library, save a classic American town, and eventually become famous around the world? You can't even begin to answer those questions until you hear the charming story of Dewey Readmore Books, the beloved library cat of Spencer, Iowa.

Dewey's story starts in the worst possible way. Only a few weeks old, on the coldest night of the year, he was stuffed into the returned book slot at the Spencer Public Library. He was found the next morning by library director, Vicki Myron, a single mother who had survived the loss of her family farm, a breast cancer scare, and an alcoholic husband. Dewey won her heart, and the hearts of the staff, by pulling himself up and hobbling on frostbitten feet to nudge each of them in a gesture of thanks and love. For the next nineteen years, he never stopped charming the people of Spencer with his enthusiasm, warmth, humility, (for a cat) and, above all, his sixth sense about who needed him most.

As his fame grew from town to town, then state to state, and finally, amazingly, worldwide, Dewey became more than just a friend; he became a source of pride for an extraordinary Heartland farming town pulling its way slowly back from the greatest crisis in its long history.

MY REVIEW:

Left in a library drop box on a freezing cold night when he was only a few weeks old, "Dewey Readmore Books," as he was later named, was adopted by the Spencer Public Library.  First he charmed the library staff and then the community of Spencer, Iowa and eventually his fame spread worldwide.

I lived in Spencer, Iowa for a few years and even though I frequented the library when I lived there, I never got the chance to meet Dewey.  He was the king of the Spencer Public Library for nearly 20 years, but I moved into town just a couple of years too late.  According to Vicki Myron, an employee of the Spencer Public Library and author of this book, I really missed out on something special!

This story is touching.  Yes, it's a book about a cat who lived in a library, but there are also pieces of the author's life story, small town drama and history of the town of Spencer (and northwest Iowa).  The author had me in tears one moment and laughing out loud the next.  The book is lighthearted and heartwarming.  Dewey: The Small-Town Library Cat Who Touched the World is a must-read if you love cats (or any animal, really) or you love libraries or you live (or have ever lived) in Iowa!