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Cats & Daughters:: They Don't Always…

Cats & Daughters:: They Don't Always Come When Called

by Helen Brown

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English (4)  German (1)  Italian (1)  All (6)
Showing 4 of 4
Helen Brown, die Autorin, ist von Schicksalsschlägen wahrlich nicht verschont geblieben. Als kleiner Junge stirbt ihr Sohn Sam bei einem Autounfall und wäre Cleo nicht gewesen, die kleine Katze die sich Sam kurz vor seinem Tod ausgesucht hatte, wer weiß, ob Helen Brown noch ihr Leben genießen und wir ihr Buch 'Cleo' hätten lesen können. Und als ob dies nicht für ein ganzes Dasein ausreichen würde, erhält sie gut 20 Jahre später die Diagnose Brustkrebs. Von dieser Zeit handelt nun ihr zweites Buch; und wie wieder eine Katze eine nicht unerhebliche Rolle in diesem Teil ihres Lebens spielt - zumindest laut dem Klappentext.
Mittlerweile ist die Autorin ein zweites Mal verheiratet und gerade, als ihr ihre älteste Tochter Lydia eröffnet hat, dass sie für längere Zeit nach Sri Lanka möchte, um buddhistische Nonne zu werden, erhält Helen den Befund 'Krebs'. Als wenn sie mit alldem nicht genügend zu verkraften hätte, ist die Familie plötzlich Eigentümerin eines unglaublich süßen, aber völlig durchgedrehten Siamkaters, der nichts als Unruhe ins Haus bringt. Davon und von ihrem Ringen mit ihrer Krankheit sowie die Bedrückung über die extreme Abnabelung ihrer Tochter schreibt Helen Brown wie im ersten Buch in amüsanter und leicht lesbarer Form.
Dennoch: 'Kater mit Karma' empfand ich ungleich weniger unterhaltend als Cleo. Jonah, der Kater, ist zwar kein unwichtiger Teil dieser Geschichte, doch er spielt bei weitem nicht eine solche Rolle wie seine Vorgängerin. Hauptthema ist der Kampf gegen den Krebs und das Verhältnis von Helen zu Lydia. Dies ist insbesondere an den stetigen Wiederholungen festzustellen. Ihre Gedanken zur Endlichkeit des Lebens, die ständigen Vergleiche 'Helen und ihre Mutter' und 'Lydia und ihre Mutter', die immerwiederkehrenden Erinnerungen an Sam - beim dritten Mal flog ich nur noch diagonal über diese Seiten. Vielleicht war der zeitliche Abstand zu dem Geschehenen noch zu gering, aber wie auch immer, an die Qualität ihres Erstlings Cleo reicht der Nachfolger nicht heran. Schade! ( )
  Xirxe | Dec 2, 2014 |
First, let me say that I was not aware of the author's first book, "Cleo" until I began reading this book. I don't remember how I discovered the availability of this title but it captured my attention and it was added to my 'wish to read' list. This is a beautiful memoir by Helen Brown to delight every aspect of a reader's senses from the beauty of the cover design by Colleen Andrews to the collage of color family photographs on the first page to the author's remembrances throughout the pages. The descriptions of experiences, thoughts and emotions are shared with honesty and without hesitation.
As I am a daughter that wandered away from my home town on two occasions to follow my heart - once for professional exploration and once simply to follow my heart - I can truly understand some of the perplexing conversations through the years between mother and daughter. As dearest cat Jolie continued to live with Mother throughout the years of these same wanderings I have a deep appreciation for Jonah's nurturing of Helen Brown's family as well as his soulful reactions.
This is a very special glimpse of the bonds shared by mothers and daughters, the friendship circle of women when courage, strength and hope are needed for sharing in higher volumes but softly without fanfare and the unconditional love between cats and their forever families. ( )
  Corduroy7 | Aug 6, 2014 |
I did not read Cleo, Brown's first book, before this one, the sequel. Jonah is almost a background figure (well---CAT) in this 2nd memoir of Brown's that mostly concerns mother/daughter relationships. The book is very readable---Brown writes openly about everything you might be curious to know about her---warm, funny, honest. Jonah is certainly in the picture but in typical cat fashion, he is always looking for more attention and I think Brown keeps him "under control" in her descriptions. It would be delightful to hear more about this family, including Jonah..... ( )
  nyiper | Jan 17, 2014 |
I thought that I was going to be reading about a cat but it turned out to be more about a woman recovering from breast cancer and doing battle with her daughter. Helen Brown comes across as a rather whiny, smug and self congratulatory person.

Jonah, on the few occasions when he appeared, (he came in about half way through the book) sounded remarkably like my Bombay boy and I could have done with more about him and less about Mrs Brown.

It took a real effort of will to actually finish this book. Pity about that; I shall not bother to read her first book, Cleo. ( )
  pinkozcat | Aug 28, 2012 |
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This work appears to have been published as Cats & Daughters in UK, After Cleo Came Jonah in Australasia and Kater mit Karma in Germany. It follows the separate work Cleo.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0806536063, Paperback)

'Some say your previous cat chooses your new feline. If so, what in cat heaven's name was our beloved Cleo thinking when she sent us a crazy cat like Jonah?' Jonah entered Helen Brown's life not long after she was diagnosed with breast cancer and had begun recovery from a mastectomy. His arrival coincided with the finalisation of her previous book, Cleo, as well as preparations for the wedding of her son and struggles with her daughter's determination to embark on a spiritual journey. Jonah, as it happened, was just as headstrong as Helen's daughter. So while Helen attempted to deal with her own mortality and help arrange a wedding, her daughter took off to war-torn Sri Lanka and Jonah fled down the street. In Cats and Daughters, Helen Brown writes with honesty and humour about family life, its serious setbacks and life-changing events. She also learns that sometimes the best thing a strong mother and cat slave can do is step back, have faith in those she loves and be grateful nothing's perfect. As Helen writes in her dedication, this book is 'to cats and daughters who don't always come when called'.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:04:49 -0400)

Having sworn she'd never get another cat, the author opens her heart to a Siamese who, with her son getting married and her daughter setting off on a personal quest, is just what the household needs during a time of change.

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