Book Review - Homer's Odyssey By Gwen Copper
October 14, 2010
Young Adult books are awesome, this I know. The writers and plots are sometimes so much better than what adult authors are writing. I’m not one to negate a great adult book though, and especially an animal story at that. Homer’s Odyssey by Gwen Copper came across my eye when I was scrolling through the Rainy Day Books newsletter I receive via email. Their newsletter lets me know what authors are coming to town. For two months, I saw the author’s smiling face holding this beautiful black cat, but I resisted the urge to learn more. Like all animal stories I’ve read or heard about before, I thought the poor cat would end up dead. I couldn’t have been more wrong.
The author’s picture caught me in the right mood one day, and I read the following tag line "A Fearless Feline Tale or How I Learned about Love and Life with a Blind Wonder Cat". I immediately put it on hold, and received the book in two days. I could not put the book down for a week. Homer was a kitten when he was found on the street in Miami with a severe eye infection. The couple who found him was interested in adopting him. However, when the local vet said she could save his life by removing his eyes, they changed their minds and actually begged the vet to euthanize him. They didn’t think he would have much of a life.
Gwen Copper comes to the rescue with her other two cats, Scarlett and Vashti. This begins a tale (get it…tail!) of inspiration and amazement as this blind cat learns to climb a 6 ft bookcase, teaches himself to use the toilet, plays fetch, loves music, and makes friends with whomever he meets. At one point, Homer saves Gwen from an attacker in the middle of the night! This book isn’t just about Homer and his unbelievable antics: the book also chronicles Gwen’s life with her three cats and the many ups and downs of being in her twenties. Gwen adds antidotes about what she has learned from life with a blind cat, like being fearless when it comes to her life. Taking risks are okay because if you fall on your face, you just get up and try it again as Homer does. Sometimes being aware of your limitations, limits you from taking risks. If Homer could see how high the bookcases are, would he dare climb them?
I recently had the pleasure of seeing Ms. Cooper as she read a chapter from the book and answered questions. She is just as passionate and amazed at Homer as she was in the book. She jokingly divulged that Homer, who is now thirteen years old, has a catnip addiction. Pictures were shown of Homer at his scratching post and playing with his toys. Just like reading the book, it was Ms. Cooper’s live enthusiasm for this cat, and the spark of hope this book brings to the reader that made it an enjoyable night.
If you want a book that makes you laugh, think, and feel just plain great about having it in your grasp, check out Homer’s Odyssey.
Crystal M-S.Tags: dogs, cats, book review, animals