A Street Cat named Bob is a heart warming story about an amazing bond between Human and Feline. Bowen depicts his life living on the streets and explains how he met Bob, a stray ginger cat, who soon became his best friend. Bob was injured when James first stumbled across him in the halls of his supported living accommodation. After trying and failing to locate Bob’s owner, James decided to take matters into his own hands and seek treatment for Bob’s injuries caring for him whilst he recovered with the intention of letting him go back to the streets afterwards.
Only that didn’t go quite to plan as Bob didn’t really feel like leaving after forming a bond with James, and began to follow him onto the bus into London where James would busk for money and sell the Big Issue magazine. They became quite the inseparable duo, everyone around knew of James and Bob and their incredible story of how they found each other in their time of need. James writes about how it wasn’t always easy breezing working on the streets of London and how it wasn’t always a great place for Bob to be as some locals were not as caring as others.
James Bowen talks about the struggles of his drug addiction and how Bob provided him with hope and gave him a reason to wake up in the morning and most importantly a reason to get clean. I’m sure many people can relate to how much a pet can change your life whether it is a cat or not, I believe that this story sends out a message of hope to those who could be down a similar path in their life as James.
If you’ve only ever watched the movie you won’t understand the struggles that James actually faced in detail, the movie glosses over so much information like how Bowen actually ended up on the streets to begin with and how he got over his addictions. It is much more insightful into his daily struggles and his feelings. Bowen explains how he felt invisible until Bob wandered into his life, which is heart breaking to think about someone feeling that low, Bob made him feel loved and gave him a real true friend which I think we can all agree that everyone needs.
“Living on the streets of London strips away your dignity, your identity − your everything, really. Worst of all, it strips away people’s opinion of you. They see you are living on the streets and treat you as a non-person. They don’t want anything to do with you. Soon you haven’t got a real friend in the world.”James Bowen, A Street Cat Named Bob
I read many reviews on A Street Cat Named Bob and one of the things I noted was a lot of people commenting about the quality of the writing. James Bowen is not a writer and he addresses this in his book. This book was never meant to be a great piece of literature it is meant to tell a true story of a man’s life which it does so beautifully. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and I would highly recommend it to any animal lover.
4 out of 5 paws rating from me!