Cover Image: My Cat Called Red

My Cat Called Red

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Member Reviews

As a cat lover this was touching and heartwarming.  Red is an extraordinary cat. When he turns up on Robin’s doorstep one night the little boy doesn’t realise how magical the cat’s powers are.

For Red has a magic purr. But he’s been on a journey, a search for his forever home, and with all the danger and the excitement that has accompanied that, he’s come to lose his purr.


The troubled Robin won’t rest until he knows Red’s story.
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This will be a good book to read if your child is having a lot of emotion that they cannot put into words that are festering. Robin is a boy who has gone through a lot at such a young age. Bullied at school for his red hair, becoming an orphan and being moved from house to house because his anger caused him to act out. He ends up with his grandfather, who does not engage with his bad behavior. When he goes to pull a red cat's tail, his grandfather begins to tell him the story about where the red cat came from, and why he lost his purr.

Every scar and scratch on the cat's body has a reason for it. Robin's grandfather tells everything, from when he was born, how he lost his mom and his skirmishes with both rats, other cats, and naughty boys who are cruel to animals. Robin begins to see the parallels in his life with the cat as they learn more about him.

This is one of those books that I would love to expose my kids to when they are older. While we have 3 rescue dogs, my kids do not understand the full extent of what having a rough life can be like. Also, there is a great underlying message that you are never alone, no matter how much you feel that you are.
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It's beautiful but sad.
Main reasons why you should pick this book:
1. There is a cat - not just any cat - but a Magical one
2. Story of a little boy & how he tackles the biggest loss in his life
3. Journey of travelling door to door until you find the permanent habitat
4. A well-structured book with a smooth flow. Highlighting the exact areas why things happen in the right order.
5. You will love the ending

The to-&-fro when the cat talks about its story from one home to another is a little confusing. 
The book seems to be Middle-grade but I would not recommend this to children below the age of 12
Alert: Animal cruelty,
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This book is apparently aimed at middle school children. I'm assuming because I'm from the UK that it represents 9-11 year old.
I at times found this difficult to read. It deals with a few dark issues.
Losing your mum at a young age, no one wants you. You end up with your grandfather.
Then a long comes a stray cat. Having a similar story but delves in to his experience on the street. Also, animal cruelty.

I can understand the need for young people to come to terms with these issues. But really? Do 9-11 year olds need this at that age?

Despite that I did enjoy this book a lot.But I found it hard to read and I'm a lot older than the target audience.
I would allow older children to read this but under supervision.
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Loved this book as it's well written, fun to read and heartwarming. I loved the style of writing and the story kept me reading.
A must read for cat lovers.
Highly recommended.
Many thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for this ARC, all opinions are mine
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Following the death of his mother, 8yo Robin is a troubled boy who is shunted from relative to relative until he comes to live with his grandfather.  One evening a ginger cat lands on their doorstep, and Robin's grandfather tells him the story of the cat's trials and tribulations until that point.

Somewhat reminiscent of Watership Down, the red cat's journey takes him from a farm and across town and through multiple owners, dangers and adventures until he finds safety.

There are some pretty raw moments in this book. Robin is orphaned in the first chapter, and some readers may struggle to get past this point.  Red the cat's journey is equally fraught, and there are depictions of animal cruelty.

Its not sanitised for younger readers - its raw and truthful about the life of a stray cat.

Aimed at middle grade children, this book may be good for kids to gain an understanding of empathy and work through trauma with the help of animals.  

My own, highly sensitive 9yo, however, was unable to read it, as he internalised it too much.

**Many thanks to Netgalley for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review**
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This book was a wonderful read! If you are a cat lover this is the book for you. Once you start reading it, you can't put it down. Loved it!!
I received a complimentary copy from BooksGoSocial via NetGalley and was not required to write a review. All opinions expressed are my own.
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My Cat Called Red is a heart-warming story for kids about a red cat who has lost his purr. This special cat’s purr can bring out the good in everyone, make them happy, and calm them. But what happens when he loses it? How can he get it back?

Jane Lightbourne is a brilliant storyteller, her book must have a five star!
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Cute little story with great underlying messages and lessons. Definitely told at a reading level for someone in middle grade or younger. The characters were lovely and this book definitely felt like a big warm hug by the end. I felt the book itself could have done without the illustrations scattered throughout though.
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What a lovely story! I will gladly tell this story to my children in the future. In this book we followed the journey of a cat named Red, in search of a new home.. There's so much going on in Red's adventures but we got a delightful ending.
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I love cats, especially the red/orange varieties! And while I will always stop  to read a story or book about cats, it's always nice to find one about those ones! I enjoyed this tale about one lone red cat's adventures to find a happy home for both himself and his little sandy companion, I think kids 7 and up, who love animals, will enjoy this book.  This story is an easy read with lovely descriptive 
 language. Heck, even adults who love cats will love this tale. It's timely for me, as well, as I have found a new home for a young stray! Kudos Jane Lightbourne! Wonderful story!
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Firstly, thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for the ARC of this book. I hadn't heard of this writer before, but I'm a sucker for animal stories and children's stories/middlegrade so I requested this book as soon as I saw it and was delighted to receive a copy.

This tells the story of Robin, a troubled boy following his mother's death, and how he's sent around various relatives until he lives with his grandfather. There, he meets an abandoned red cat, and the grandfather proceeds to tell the red cat's life story. And, wow, this is a sad story at times. It does get dark--and I did wonder just how appropriate this would be for younger children, given I think this is aimed at seven-year-olds. (I would've recommended it for being slightly older kids, as you've got a lot of rhetoric on death and grief--which made me, a woman in her late twenties tearful at times--as well as talk of animal cruelty, such as how some kittens are drowned and/or killed when they're not wanted.) But this is a good book to give to children to teach them about these difficult themes--life, death, grief, etc, and of course animal cruelty. In fact, I don't think I've come across a children's book before that tackles it so directly.

The framing of the cat's narrative is folded within Robin's story, via the grandfather telling the tale. It does give it a Chinese Box frame narrative, similar to that in Wuthering Heights, so this book is definitely well structured. I could see a lot of care had gone into the writing of this.

There are quite a lot of characters in this too, as the red cat tells of how he's gone from home to home, and a couple of times I got a bit lost or mixed up a few of these characters when they were later referred back to.
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This book was very cute! It's about a boy who is veey unhappy with this life, especially his hair colour. Once, he was visiting a farm where he found a beautiful red cat! Little did he know, she was magical. Its a fun read with illustrations after every chapter. Would recommend it to kids.
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This delightful tale of a cat destined to be loved by a boy takes the reader through the adventures of a not-loved-enough Tom cat. Each chapter introduces characters both likable and not so much, both human and not so much. The settings are well described and goosebump worthy. I hope there are more adventures to come for Red.
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Princess Fuzzypants here:  Sometimes in the flurry of books that I read, something gets lost along the way.  It is always good when I get a reminder about a book and discover a true gem.  My Cat Called Red is a treasure.  I might be slightly biased about red kitties, being a red tabby Maine Coon, but that is not why I love this book so much.

It is advertised for young readers 7 and up.  I think anyone above that age right up to 100 would find the story moving and charming if they are animal lovers.  There are two protagonists in the story- a young boy named Robin and the titular cat, Red.  Both have suffered great loss and sadness in their young lives.  Robin is fortunate to have a grandfather who comes to raise him after he proves too much to handle for his aunts after his mother dies.  When Red shows up at his door, Robin does not welcome him.  His grandfather begins to tell Robin the story of Red’s journey from kittenhood to their home, with all the trials, tribulations and heartbreak.  But Red is a resilient cat and with a buddy he meets along the way, the two venture into the cruel world looking for a place to call home and humans to call family.

There are many bittersweet moments along the way on this perilous trip and just when Robin is convinced his grandfather’s story was fiction, he sees something that will change him forever.  I defy you not to have a silly grin on your face as you finish the tale.  I know I wanted more.  Five purrs and two paws up.
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Book Review: My Cat Called Red
Author: Jane Lightbourne
Publisher: BooksGoSocial/Nevada Street Press
Publication Date: February 24, 2021
Review Date: August 15, 2021

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a honest review. 

From the blurb:
“Red is an extraordinary cat. When he turns up on Robin’s doorstep one night the little boy doesn’t realise how magical the cat’s powers are.

For Red has a magic purr. But he’s been on a journey, a search for his forever home, and with all the danger and the excitement that has accompanied that, he’s come to lose his purr.


The troubled Robin won’t rest until he knows Red’s story.

And so his grandfather tells it to him.
Mid-grade chapter book My Cat Called Red is a heartwarming adventure story by author Jane Lightbourne, about friendship and courage in the face of danger, featuring the magical cat Red and the purr that transforms children’s lives. The ebook topped the Amazon Hot New Release charts when it first came out and has been an Amazon category bestseller in several categories, reaching the number 2 spot in the UK and number 1 in Australia across its categories. Designed for children aged 8 to 12, My Cat Called Red is a modern classic that will appeal to all ages.”
This is an adorable story about a Cat called Red, for Children/Middle Grade. 

Excellent in all aspects. The various character. The plot, and settings. And the point of view as seen by Red the Cat. 

I think any child age 4-9 would love to have this book read to them, over and over again. 

Best of luck to Jane Lightbourne with her continued literary career. 

This review will be posted on NetGalley and Goodreads.

#netgalley #mycatcalledred #janelightbourne #catstories
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I love how this book told a story about a cat in an easy way. It's a funny book from the point of view of the boy, then came his grandfather and the cat which later would be the story and the storyteller for him. An interesting journey for both a cat and a boy who both lost something important.
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Well this an exquisite book that I so enjoyed reading to my son. It really is purrfect in so many ways and a wonderful book for children to enjoy.   The characters are well written and you really start to feel an affinity with them as the story unfolds. Red's adventures are really brought to life through the pages of this book. I would definitely recommend this.
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