Book Reviews/giveaways/ Q + A,  Cats,  Reviews & interviews

Cat Reviews Homer: The Ninth Life of a Blind Wonder Cat

If you love cats, sharing makes us purrrr :-)

Welcome to a special edition of Mondays With Merlin with your’s truly, Merlin. The older I get (almost 21 and a half), the easier it is to celebrate and savor ephemeral joy.


As you may know, I’m no stranger to reviewing cat books but it’s usually on Sundays. Brace yourself, dear ones or bring out the smelling salts. I’m announcing my retirement as a feline book reviewer. Yes, I was the first cat to review books with paw ratings. There are many copy cat reviewers now. I was also the first cat to review a book by a celebrity cat (Lil Bub) and the first to pose with the books displaying front and back covers.

I’ve shared the honor with Layla and my fur bros. since 2011 at Cat Wisdom 101 and since 2008 at Boomer Muse.

It’s the sequel to Homer’s Odyssey: A Fearless Feline Tale, or How I learned about Love and Life with a Blind Wonder Cat by the gifted writer and supreme cat mama, Gwen Cooper.


Homer, the solid black cat with spunk and soul wasn’t blind like me who gradually lost my sight. By medical necessity, Homer had both eyes removed as a tiny kitten. It didn’t stop him from living a larger-than-life life with millions of fans. If you haven’t read the first Homer book, published in 2009, do yourself a favor and get acquainted with this wonder of cats. The memoir chronicles his first twelve years including a move from Miami to New York, surviving 9/11. I promise there won’t be a dull moment or a dry eye.

Year after year, his legions of fans kept up with his news at Gwen Cooper’s blog and Facebook page. Homer was already an older boy of 12 when fame hit and a scant four years later he left us. Like the rest of the cat community, we paid homage with a tribute and even the New York Times honored Homer with an obit. The collective shock of his death reverberated. Homer was the first famous blind cat and poster boy for special needs cats. He made black, the least adoptable color cool and reframed the purrfection of imperfection.perfection of imperfection.


The death of any beloved cat is hard but what do you do if you’re a writer?

Some will whip out a pet loss memoir but Gwen Cooper couldn’t. The death and subsequent death of her two other cats blindsided her. She healed her heart by charitable efforts on her Homer Facebook page and adopted Fanny and Clayton, a black three-legged cat. Fans hoped a Homer sequel might materialize but they would have to wait. Gwen wrote a novel, narrated by a tabby cat, Love Saves The Day and crowd sourced a cat selfie book, Kittenish with 100% of the proceeds to Human Society International to support their ongoing animal-rescue efforts in Nepal after their devastating earthquake last year.

My mom chatted with Gwen a few months ago and learned the exciting news: there would be a sequel and Gwen decided to self-publish Homer: The Ninth Life of a Blind Wonder Cat. She’d agonized whether to do a sequel for so long, when she made her mind up, the words poured out in record time. The entire process from start to published book took a fraction of the usual year in traditional publishing. Gwen set us early PDF of the book but Layla got all weepy with me dancing at death’s door and couldn’t to do a book review. She managed to read the book again and coaxed me to review it. I’m glad she did and she didn’t didn’t to bribe me with treats.

Oh, my whiskers, what can I say, it’s a solid 4 Paw Rating and must read for Homer fans.

It’s a fast and entertaining read but digs deep into what it means to truly love a cat through this complicated thing called life. Adopting a cat is a commitment for life, in sickness and in health until one of you dies and it’s usually the cat who goes first. Gwen gets it and with her beautifully written words, we get it too. Being a responsible cat parent can open our hearts and make us better humans. She shares the sublime and often funny highs and the lows: the sacrifices made, painful choices, the sad but inevitable loss anyone who has loved and lost a cat knows.

Layla would have liked more. It’s a slim but concise 116 pages and I say, less is more. It’s packed with juicy insider bits about publishing and Homer’s rise as a celebrity cat. It’s hard to believe Homer was around before Twitter, Instagram and Grumpy Cat! I enjoyed reading (okay, I confess: I’m blind and can’t read but enjoy listening to) the selection of stories about Gwen, her hubby, Laurence and their entire family of cats. There will never be another Homer but his legacy lives on as an advocate for black, blind or otherwise less adoptable cats. Many lives, feline and human are enriched and wiser because he lived. Homer: The Ninth Life of a Blind Wonder Cat is an inspiration, and I would know since it takes one to know one.

Purchase links may be found at www.hihomer.com. Visit the author at GwenCooper.com

Homer’s legacy continues to help cats everywhere. FOLLOW HOMER The Blind Wonder Cat ON SOCIAL MEDIA.

We’d be eternally grateful if you take our short survey.

See you next Monday!



Create your own user feedback survey


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

error: Content is copyright protected !!