Wednesday 3 June 2009
Library Cats: About Time They Came To The UK?
I've been to lots of bookshops with resident cats, but am yet to visit a library with its own moggy. Nobody in America seemed to think it was particularly unusual that Dewey, the bestselling literary cat of the last year, lived in a library. But in Britain, the idea of a library with a cat would still be very strange: maybe not quite as odd as a Citizen's Advice Bureau with its own iguana, but not far off. I can, in a way, see the reasoning behind the reticence. Nobody really wants their large print Maeve Binchys weed and puked on. If I, for example, were to drop Shipley off at my largest local library, in Norwich, it would only be a matter of time before he'd located their copy of Under The Paw, and started his own destructive, fangy critique of it. Pretty soon, someone would have called the pest people in or chased him into the local Pizza Express, and all hell would have broken loose. But on the whole I think Britain needs to get with the times, when it comes to bibliocats. Who knows? Perhaps it already has? There must be one library cat in the UK and, if anyone has any information about it, I'd like to hear about it. As it is, this list of top library mogs remains entirely US-orientated.