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Kittens in the City

Book Cover Little Yellow House

This month we're looking at books about community and fostering connection, and Carissa Halton's Little Yellow House is a perfect title to start with. In this collection of candid and thoughtful essays inspired by life in Edmonton's inner-city Alberta Avenue neighbourhood, Halton writes about her friends and neighbours, the community institutions that support them, the challenges of city life, home ownership, raising kids, and the tensions of gentrification. It's an illuminating and hopeful book that asks readers to think again about what makes places liveable, and also provides a wonderful glimpse of Jane Jacobs' proverbial sidewalk ballet.

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The first set of kittens Bill ever took in was brought to his attention by a desperate mewing from the blackened garage that slumped behind his six-suite rooming house. The kittens followed Bill to the front of his home where he set them up comfortably under the wooden stairs.

These three kittens were the product of a union between two abandoned cats as they waited patiently for the return of their owners. Bill had noticed the cats’ human family packing up the moving truck and the next day drove away with everything they owned except for their four feline pets lounging on the front porch. They weren’t the only ones aba …

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Illustrator Gallery: Kristi Bridgeman and A Carnival of Cats

Book Cover a Carnival of Cats

Once in a while, a person has to let her editorial bias show, and mine is this: I'm mad mad mad for bunting. So I was terrifically excited when we had the opportunity feature Kristi Bridgeman's illustrations from A Carnival of Cats, written by Charles Ghigna, because there's a string of bunting on every page. (What's a carnival without one?) 

But it's not all about the bunting*. Because there's no better time than Halloween for a carnival of cats, methinks, for carnival-ing the Black Bombay cat in particular. Plus: the illustrations are gorgeous. Bridgeman is an accomplished artist (see more of her work here) who has illustrated books by Canadian writers including P.K. Page (There Once Was a Camel, and other titles) and Fiona Tinwei Lam (The Rainbow Rocket). 

Bridgeman's fine-art pieces can be found at the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria and Sooke Harbour House Gallery. Born and raised on the west coast of Canada, Kristi resides and paints in her home-based studio at the edge of the rainforest on Vancouver Island, British Columbia.

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Carnival of Cats Image

 

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Books About Amazing Pets

tagged: cats, animals, pets

There are two camps of people: pet-lovers and pet-haters. And among pet-lovers, we all know that cats are the superior species.

[Back again. Some tidying up to do after numerous dog-lover tackles. You know who you are.]

For the pet-lovers among us, even you dog people, this post is for you. It's filled with books about the incredible bonds we can have with animals, and about the myriad ways dogs, horses, and on admittedly rare occasions, cats, can heal us and make us better people.

*****

The Dog and I, by Roy MacGregor: From Canada’s beloved award-winning journalist and bestselling author comes a collection of essays, new and previously published, on man’s best friend. In the course of 20 years of column writing about everything from politics to hockey and everything in between, Roy MacGregor has learned firsthand that the columns with the greatest reader impact have been those about the family dog. Roy has collected these columns and written many more on everything from puppy love to the sorrow of losing a pet, as experienced by Roy and the dogs he’s known and loved.

 

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