The Nardio Book Review
Is It Worth Your Time?
Yes. Cleo: The Cat Who Mended a Family is a heartwarming story.
What Did You Think Without Spoiling It?
Honestly, I’m a total sucker for these kinds of books where an animal is able to heal a family. There’s just something about it that is ultimately more heart-warming. Cleo is no exception. I’m already a big cat person. Add that with the elegant prose that Helen Brown weaves and you’ve got a winning combination.
Why it Works
Cleo, at its core, is a book about grief and overcoming that grief. The writing is honest and peppered with humor throughout thanks to Brown’s own dry sense of humor and her description of Cleo’s antics. There are certainly some very sad parts throughout the book, but Brown does a great job with her pacing. It certainly helped Brown and the book to have such an energetic character like Cleo to bring some lightness to the story. Cleo literally jumps from the pages and I can perfectly imagine everything she does. In fact, I became so attached to Cleo that I couldn’t help but tear up a little towards the end. Brown anthropomorphizes Cleo a tad too much, but honestly, I didn’t mind. If you have a pet for so long in your life, you eventually start seeing it as more human than it actually is. God knows that I talked to my cats when I had them. This is also a pretty quick read. Great for those rainy weekends.
Not much. I thought Cleo was heart-breaking and heart-warming at the same time.
This is a poignant little book that deserves plenty of praise. Regardless of whether you are a cat lover or not, pick this book up. Also, Brown has already come out with a sequel called Cats and Daughters. The book goes over Brown’s struggle with breast cancer, her daughter going on a spiritual journey to Sri Lanka and the introduction of a new cat called Jonah.
Agree? Disagree? Write your comments below.
Check out our other book reviews here.