One of the many wonderful things about NetGalley is that you come across books that would otherwise never have crossed your radar. Over the last year I have discovered that I have a love for fantastical, magical, middle grade, adventure stories.
The Cat Ninja and a Cabal of Shadows by Erik DeLeo is my latest read and guys it was just as much fun as the title suggests.
Yes we have a cat who is a ninja, she has an agent who happens to be a mouse, she has a tragic backstory and a thirst for vengeance. What more could a reader ask for? Puns? Well we have them too. The bad guys are after all known as the Barkuza and they are heavily tattooed, muscular dogs who aren’t to be messed with. The Cat Ninja is a glorious feast of fun for your eyes and imagination. Also, cutest cover ever!
‘The sun had broken through the morning gray, and it’s gleaming rays were beginning to heat up the tile floor. It called out silently to Miko, tempting her to get off the chair.
“Since I get moody without enough light, I’m going to go lay down by the window. It helps prevent Seasonal Affective Disorder.”
“Cats can’t get that.”
“I’m a unique case.” ‘
I think Miko is an entire mood. I love her.
I don’t want to delve into the story to much as it will ruin the fun of reading it, but I will say Miko, our cat ninja, has taken on the job of finding a missing puppy, which goes against her better judgement, especially when she discovers the father of the pup is the dog who murdered her own family. Everything gets mighty complicated for Miko and she soon discovers that it isn’t just one pup that is missing. Someone is trading in dogs.
This was a blast to read, it’s fast paced with plenty of action and lots of twists and turns. The setting is wonderful. The streets of Kyoto, with the vivid descriptions, make for a wonderful backdrop to the story. The attention to detail was great. Miko is a teahouse cat, which adds a whole other element. We get so much cat purrsonality, she likes naps, she likes the sun, she hisses when scared, she is emotionally distant with a dislike of getting wet. It’s cliché, but fun.
One thing that did get on my nerves as I was reading it was the way the author would use the Japanese word for something and then immediately follow it with a translation. Essentially saying the same thing twice in a sentence. It didn’t happen once or twice, it continued for most of the book. I think that the author should have had a bit more faith in his readers and their ability to work it out for themselves without constantly being told. It seemed to be a classic case of telling not showing.
Other than that, it was a fun, quick read that I would recommend for anyone after an enjoyable, quirky read.
I received a copy of the ebook via NetGalley.
Author – Erik DeLeo
Released – 1st March 2019