Cat Master

Cat Master

4.2 7
by Bonnie Pemberton
Tension is growing between the Ferals and Indoors, and the old Cat Master, spiritual leader of all felines, is dying. Time is running out, and he must choose a successor that will rule wisely and keep peace among their kind.


Tension is growing between the Ferals and Indoors, and the old Cat Master, spiritual leader of all felines, is dying. Time is running out, and he must choose a successor that will rule wisely and keep peace among their kind.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Meagan Albright
The Cat Master tells a story of the social hierarchy and philosophy (and the accompanying discord, strife, and unity) found in the secret world of cats. It may be difficult for some readers to get into at first, but the characters are engaging and odd, and will soon draw readers into the story. The story focuses on the rivalry between the indoor cat, Buddy, selected by the previous cat master as his replacement, and Buddy's brother, an outdoor cat with an evil nature and a tendency to manipulate and abandon his fellow animals. Buddy is clearly the best candidate for ruling the world of the cats, but he must first overcome his own inhibitions and self doubt before he can become the next cat master. Some of the characters, including Buddy, progress and mature throughout the story as they develop new friendships and feelings of self worth, while others remain evil and ill-mannered throughout the story. The most satisfying characters are relatively minor characters: a small lizard that ends up being almost as important as he thinks he is, and Buddy's son, a feral cat who makes sacrifices in order to make the morally correct decisions. While The Cat Master is not a must-read, it is an enjoyable and strange story.
School Library Journal

Gr 5-9
On a bright Texas night, the elderly and infirm Cat Master, the spiritual leader of all cats, tries to contact his successor, Buddy, through mind speak. Unfortunately, his message is telepathically intercepted by would-be usurper Jett. A chain of events is set in motion that causes Buddy to leave his pampered life Indoors to return to the Outs and a feral lifestyle, in order to claim his birthright. This story is as old as Cain and Abel, and Pemberton has borrowed heavily from a tradition of stock characters and predictable situations. There are the annoyingly naive kittens, Zekki and Pris, who can't see danger while it's holding the door open for them, and the evil Jett, who's every dastardly deed cues maniacal laughter. There is an overuse of capital letters to indicate everything from The Law that dictates all areas of feline behavior to The Boy, left behind by Buddy, Zekki, and Pris while they fulfill their destinies. Fortunately, a strong cast of supporting characters covers a multitude of melodramatic sins and keeps the action moving to an ultimately satisfying conclusion. The use of swearing in a few situations seems unnecessary. The Cat Master should find an audience with readers waiting for the latest entry in Erin Hunter's "Warriors" series (HarperCollins).
—Kara Schaff DeanCopyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

Kirkus Reviews
A stunning cover is the best part of this mediocre animal fantasy. Born an alley cat, Buddy has lived the safe life of an "Indoor" for years. When the dying Cat Master, telepathic guru of the world's feral felines, attempts to summon Buddy as his chosen successor, the message is disrupted by Buddy's insanely jealous brother Jett. Jett then lures his rival's innocent housecat friends "Out," as a trap to keep Buddy from his destiny. While Jett is irredeemably malevolent, Buddy is always the kindest, wisest, bravest, most wonderfullest cat ever. Secondary characters represent a wide range of species, but are caricatures serving principally to drive an overly complicated plot. A cavalcade of cliffhangers and coincidences (not to mention violence, gore and gratuitous cruelty) provide plenty of excitement, but very little sense. Young readers might not notice the gaping logical holes, and the many coy sexual allusions could sail over their heads; the unnecessary four-letter profanities definitely will not. Those desperate for another cat story may find this more entertaining than reading the back of a pet-food bag-barely. (Fantasy. 10+)

Product Details

Cavendish, Marshall Corporation
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.57(d)
Age Range:
10 - 14 Years

Meet the Author

Bonnie Pemberton spent thirty years as a singer, actress, writer and voice-over talent in Dallas and Los Angeles. An avid animal lover, she invented Sticky Paws® for Furniture, and anti-scratching product for cats. For over fifteen years, the company she started, Fe-Lines, Inc., made and marketed pet behavior modification products worldwide and donated a portion of all earnings to various animal charities through the Buddy Fund.

Bonnie, a member of The Cat Writers Association and Trinity Writers Workshop, lives in Texas with her husband, Kipp Baker. The Cat Master is her first novel.

Sequel to The Cat Master, The Lizard Returns, was published in January of 2013.

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Cat Master 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 7 reviews.
BookPhyscho More than 1 year ago
This book is a great book for any animal-lover, cat-lover, Warriors-lover, or just a good ole' book-lover. The characters are very real, very animal-like. Their natures shine true in everything they do: they treat everything as a real animal would treat it. The writing was fluent and a joy to read. The story is captivating, emotional, and exciting. The Cat Master is a traditional story with a bit of its own personal spin to it: a lost monarch is being plotted against, despised by an evil-doer, but, in the end the rightful ruler will prevail and vanquish his foe, like all good heroes do. The spin? Our hero is a cat. A good read for anyone.
Guest More than 1 year ago
It is a great plot with lots of twists and a pleasing ending. Reccomended to cat lovers and Warriors series readers. Very saddening, but all things aside, four stars!
Guest More than 1 year ago
In the same vein as Watership Down, this author spins a story for cat lovers. Buddy, an orange tabby, was saved by ¿The Boy¿ and was transformed from a ¿Feral¿ to an ¿Indoor,¿ a chasm that seemingly cannot be breached if he is to take his place as the successor to the Cat Master¿a Yoda-like feline whose wisdom and telepathic communication, combined with Mother Wind, comfort and guide cats everywhere through their lives, and eventually to Sho-Valla (the equivalent of animal ¿Heaven¿). His hard scrabble existence has been traded for a life with humans and two younger cats that Buddy attempts to train in the ways of ferals (wild cats). Buddy¿s bid to take his rightful place as the new Cat Master is challenged by Jett, his underappreciated and super vindictive sibling. What follows is a fairly predictable tale of the battle between good and evil and sibling rivalry. I found myself not quite sure how I felt about the story. Strengths were a fairly masterful development of tension and an imaginative rendering of animal characteristics. It¿s not a book that I would immediately gravitate towards, but there is certainly a place for it among students who particularly enjoy books about animals from the perspective of animals.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Great book! I love reading it!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Bonnie Pemberton has written a delightful fantasy that delves into animal nature with no holds barred. These characters behave as animals, resolve their conflicts as animals, and convey a remarkable respect for their nature as the story unfolds. Their laws are raw and Ms. Pemberton lets this reality shine through in her novel. In a setting where civilization is supposed to include animals, pampered pets find themselves dangerously trapped by their curiosity, caught in the urban jungle, where alley cats fight to survive and evil threatens to overtake their kingdom. The Cat Master is not a children¿s book, not just a young adult book, but a book for people who know that we humans do learn from the behaviors of other creatures. The author has conscientiously adhered to the rules of creature nature, giving the characters a human voice while remaining unclothed in every other respect. Parents can share the lives of these characters with their children, teens can appreciate the struggles waged against the forces of evil often disguised as good. Animal lovers can appreciate the antics and conflicts between the Indoors and Ferals who populate The Cat Master. This is a book worth reading, an engaging adventure through neighborhood backyards, alleys, and terrifying obstacles, until at last the story reaches a triumphant conclusion.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is different from what I usually read, but it was so enjoyable I couldn't put it down. All true animal lovers will be able to believe in the personalities and why they would act in such a way. It came to life for me. I enjoyed it so much I went back and bought a book for my mother, she finished it and loaned it to a friend. Now we are all 3 hoping for a Cat Master 2. I am 52yrs, and my mother and her friend are in their 70's. We loved it!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
An epic adventure with an unforgettable cast. The Old Cat Master lies dying. Reaching out with his mind, he calls his successor him to rise from the alley and claim his place he is The Chosen. A malignant force breaks the telepathic connection and Buddy, The Chosen, frets and stirs in his sleep, caught in the grip of a dream he cannot remember, unaware of what is asked of him. Buddy teaches Zekki and Pris about The Mother who watches and cares for them all and about The Law in their comfortable, warm and safe home where they live with The Boy. Outside prowls a dark shadow with one great gleaming eye burning with hatred and determined to keep Buddy from his rightful place as Cat Master. One night he leaps at the windows, rousing Buddy to tell him that all he loves will be hurt. Buddy, frantic with panic and fear, races around the house, refusing to eat or sleep, anxious for Zekki and Pris. He knows his brother Jett will follow through on his promise. One-eyed Jett has other plans, and he¿s not about to let Buddy mess them up again, no matter what it takes or who gets in his way. In three nights, Buddy must appear at The Gathering and be anointed or Jett, the Old Master¿s only other living offspring, will plunge their world into chaos and hatred as he claims the title of Cat Master. Time is running out, but Buddy is not alone. An epic adventure should be exciting, evoking tears and laughter, lingering long after the last words have been read and the book ended. Such an adventure would keep the stakes high and the timing dancing on a razor¿s edge. Bonnie Pemberton accomplishes all this with The Cat Master, and she does it with animals. Everything is at stake: honor, pride, love, passion and the future of a species¿the cats, both feral and indoor¿and Pemberton makes it work. From the reluctant Orie, full of bile, who pictures the deaths of all predators to a lecherous dachshund with an eye for the ladies¿especially if they¿re big German Shepherds¿The Cat Master is filled with characters outlined in fine, broad strokes and filled in with minutely fine detail. Pemberton¿s prose is a delightful blend of wit and insight that brings the animal world into clear and poignant focus, matching predator and prey, enemy and friend in a journey that leaves death and destruction in its wake. Passion and pathos counterbalance a taste of romance, danger, and deep sorrow within the bonds of friendship and loyalty. All forged in the heat of battle and in the face of great personal danger, Pemberton creates a tale of mythic proportions.