Good Luck Cat: How a Cat Saved a Family, and a Family Saved a Cat

Good Luck Cat: How a Cat Saved a Family, and a Family Saved a Cat

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by Lissa Warren
     
 

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Lissa Warren’s father needed a retirement companion while his wife and daughter were at work. Enter Ting, a seven-pound Korat who changed his life, and the life of the family. All kittens are mischievous, but Ting “the cat grenade” was real trouble. She was also smart, endearing, and the soul of the Warren family.

In late 2008, Lissa’s

Overview

Lissa Warren’s father needed a retirement companion while his wife and daughter were at work. Enter Ting, a seven-pound Korat who changed his life, and the life of the family. All kittens are mischievous, but Ting “the cat grenade” was real trouble. She was also smart, endearing, and the soul of the Warren family.

In late 2008, Lissa’s father died of a heart attack. The images from that night still haunt her—especially the EKG readout ending in one long, devastating em dash. Less than a year later, Lissa and her mother stared at another EKG readout, this time for Ting. A living feline extension of the man they missed so much—the man they had tried, but failed, to save—she was diagnosed with a potentially fatal heart condition. The only option was to have a human pacemaker implanted in the cat—a procedure even the best animal hospital in Boston hadn’t performed in a decade. Thus they began a medical odyssey on behalf of the little gray cat who had been her father’s shadow—a journey that would prepare one of them for her own serious diagnosis.

A gorgeously written memoir about grief, hope, and how pets both complicate and enrich our lives, The Good Luck Cat is a testament to the power of the human—and the feline—spirit.

Editorial Reviews

Roanoke Times
The Good Luck Cat is a story to show all of us that we can willingly create a loving atmosphere of mutual support by putting others’ needs ahead of our own. This story has all the drama and pathos you might expect in a novel, but this is story about real life. The story and the prose are addictive. Once you begin the book, you will probably want to continue until you finish because it is more than a story for cat lovers.
The Internet Review Of Books
This memoir of love, loss, and a cat touches the reader’s heart. . . .[T]his one is a special and beautiful story about making a family complete, about easing the pain of losing a loved one. It’s about love and devotion and soul, and the good luck Ting both brings and receives. . . .The Good Luck Cat has a strong narrative that holds readers all the way to its satisfying end. But then “Writing is easier with a cat beside you,” the author writes, readily acknowledging the contribution of the nineteen-year-old Ting-pei Warren.
Concord Monitor
Lissa Warren. . . .is an accomplished editor and publicity director. She’s also a terrific writer. Her memoir, The Good Luck Cat: How a Cat Saved a Family, and a Family Saved a Cat, is beautiful. It’s not just the story of Ting, her family’s Korat cat, who came into their home when her retired father needed a pet to keep him company. It’s also a grown daughter’s love letter to her parents. It’s a story of illness, fear and grief. And eventually, peace, in part from life with Ting: 'The clocks in our house were superfluous; we marked our time by the cat.' I don’t want to give too much away, because part of the pleasure of this book is Warren’s unfolding of the various facets of her story. This isn’t just another book about a special pet – it’s an incredible story of care and determination, love and devotion, and family.
Marco Eagle
Sink your claws in this book if you're a fan of felines. Get (cat) food for thought if you're interested in the relationship between animals and healing. Or start The Good Luck Cat if you want a smart read, and good luck accomplishing anything else.
Sun News
Sink your claws in this book if you're a fan of felines. Get (cat) food for thought if you're interested in the relationship between animals and healing. Or start The Good Luck Cat if you want a smart read, and good luck accomplishing anything else.
From the Publisher
"A tale about a cat that's so touching, it will even make dog lovers purr." —Bruce Goldstein, author of Puppy Chow is Better than Prozac

A beautifully-crafted memoir that reads like a novel, The Good Luck Cat is a reminder of the way a pet can change a life, and the way a life can change in an instant."-Ann Garvin, author of The Dog Year

"Out of the most harrowing loss, Lissa Warren has written a testament to the enduring power of love, particularly love between people and their cats. The Good Luck Cat is a moving and often gripping story of intertwining feline and human affections and destinies, and one that wonderfully captures the mercurial charisma of the title character."-Peter Trachtenberg, author of Another Insane Devotion

"In language that is as lean and lyrical as her poetry, Warren invites us to accompany her family on their adventure through love and illness, loss and more illness, and the little routines that keep the family moving forward through those emotional changes that mark everyone's life...Lissa Warren opens the family's personal lives to public scrutiny, but the personal nature of this memoir is overridden by its universality. Like the medieval morality play 'Everyman,' The Good Luck Cat is a story to show all of us that we can willingly create a loving atmosphere of mutual support by putting others' needs ahead of our own. This story has all the drama and pathos you might expect in a novel, but this is story about real life. The story and the prose are addictive. Once you begin the book, you will probably want to continue until you finish because it is more than a story for cat lovers."-Roanoke Times

"The Good Luck Cat is an ode to how four lives-three human, one feline-intertwine in acts of devotion large and small, and how those connections foster healing in the worst of times...The Good Luck Cat goes to the heart of what family means."-Energy Times "Depending on who you listen to, the Internet is alternately ruled by cats or made of them. Either way, it is well established that denizens of the Internet like a good cat tale. And, honestly, they don't get much better than what can be found in Lissa Warren's The Good Luck Cat...Gorgeously written and generously shared...A beautiful tribute not only to a beloved and much missed father, but also to feline companions everywhere who give far beyond the obvious to the people who adore them."-January Magazine

"There's death and disease in Lissa Warren's new memoir...but there's also a close-knit family that turns darkness into light."-Boston Globe

"[A] moving story."-Huffington Post

"The Good Luck Cat is an ode to how four lives-three human, one feline-intertwine in acts of devotion large and small, and how those connections foster healing in the worst of times...The Good Luck Cat goes to the heart of what family means."-Energy Times

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780762791767
Publisher:
Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
Publication date:
10/07/2014
Pages:
256
Sales rank:
477,178
Product dimensions:
5.70(w) x 7.60(h) x 1.10(d)

Meet the Author

At age twenty-four, Lissa Warren was named Publicity Director at David R. Godine, Publisher—a small but respected literary press in Boston. She went on to work in the publicity department of Houghton Mifflin before becoming Director of Publicity at Boston's Perseus Publishing where she worked for three years before being promoted to Senior Director of Publicity at their sister company, Da Capo Press. Ms. Warren is the author of The Savvy Author's Guide to Book Publicity: A Comprehensive Resource—From Building the Buzz to Pitching the Press and holds a B.S. in English Education from Miami University and an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from Bennington College. Her poetry has appeared in such publications as Quarterly West, Oxford Magazine, Black Warrior Review, and Verse, and she serves as a Poetry Editor for the literary magazine Post Road. Since 2003, Ms. Warren has been an Adjunct Professor at Boston's Emerson College, teaching graduate and undergraduate courses in Book Editing, Book Publicity, and Book Publishing as part of their Writing, Literature, and Publishing program. She also serves on the advisory council of Southern New Hampshire University's M.F.A. writing program. In 2007, she became one of the first faculty members in Boston University's publishing certificate program. She blogs about publishing for the Huffington Post, and has spoken about publishing for the Virginia Festival of the Book, Lesley University, New York University, Publishers Marketing Association, the American Society of Journalists and Authors, Publishers Association of the South, BookBuilders of Boston, the Romance Writer's Association of New England, ForeWord magazine, Grub Street, the New Hampshire Writers' Project, the Cape Cod Writers Conference, the Concord Festival of Books, the Adirondack Writer's Conference, the Compleat Biographer Conference, and Harvard University's Nieman Conference, among others. She lives in Salem, New Hampshire.

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The Good Luck Cat: How a Cat Saved a Family, and a Family Saved a Cat 3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
bthj44 More than 1 year ago
Read it , skipped a lot of it
alc1967 More than 1 year ago
Well written, but too much boring detail. I love cats, but especially cats from Thailand. I have had Siamese cats for over 50 years and I know people who have imported both Siamese and Korats from Thailand. I was very excited to read this book and very pleased to see the historical and background information that the author put in the book about the Korat and the ancient cat poems of Thailand. I was also interested to see that she got her first cat, a Burmese, from breeders in Texas. I probably knew them because I was breeding and showing Siamese in Texas around the same time that she got Cinnamon and I knew the Burmese breeders. All of that aside, this book is more about the interaction of the family with the cat and with each other. It is poignant in that the author had a very close relationship with her father and I did too. I really know how she felt when her father passed away. However, I have to take exception with some of the things she talks about when they first get the Korat kitten. I shuddered when I read about them letting the kitten chew on dental floss. Cats love to chew on strings, twist ties, rubber bands, gift bows and pretty much anything else. It is the leading cause of intestinal obstruction and can lead to death. It is the first thing breeders tell kitten buyers - never let your kitten/cat chew on string. I also didn't think it was necessary to go into quite so much detail in some areas such as all the explanation of the various drugs or medical procedures being done on anyone either human or feline. I didn't think we needed to see the surgery records for when the cat had a pacemaker inserted. I also didn't want to hear all the details of how long it took the techs to find a vein to inject contrast for an MRI on the author. I thought it was well written, but just got off track occasionally into too many details. Anyone who loves cats knows what a special relationship can develop between the cat and their human. One of the things that the author gets dead on is how earning a cat's love and respect is a very special thing and it is not the same as having a dog like you. Only really truly cat people get that, and she definitely gets it.
bscheldt More than 1 year ago
This book is not just for cat people, but for anyone that has ever loved!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is an excellent book! I do like to read about all the details because our cat did have heart problems and reading this book and learning the detail was in fact a great help! So I have a different perspective on this book! I enjoyed learning about that a cat can actually have a pace maker, I also enjoyed their great dedication to how they had to do so many things to feed their cat. I have been there, and I enjoy reading what others do. I guess if you too end up in the situation with a cat with a heart problem then you too will greatly appreciate the detail of this book. I am sorry others where so negative, because I enjoyed how attached and loving they were towards their family and cat. I have remembered many things they tried when feeding their cat when the cat didn't want to eat and have tried them myself. I want to thank you for such an informative book and was so glad you shared your wonderful family memories! I hope your cat is still alive.