Dewey: Book summary and reviews of Dewey by Vicki Myron with Bret Witter

Dewey

The Small-Town Library Cat Who Touched the World

By Vicki Myron with Bret Witter

Dewey
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  • Published in USA  Sep 2008,
    288 pages.

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Book Summary

How much of an impact can an animal have? How many lives can one cat touch? How is it possible for an abandoned kitten to transform a small library, save a classic American town, and eventually become famous around the world? You can't even begin to answer those questions until you hear the charming story of Dewey.

Dewey's story starts in the worst possible way. Only a few weeks old, on the coldest night of the year, he was stuffed into the returned book slot at the Spencer Public Library. He was found the next morning by library director, Vicki Myron, a single mother who had survived the loss of her family farm, a breast cancer scare, and an alcoholic husband. Dewey won her heart, and the hearts of the staff, by pulling himself up and hobbling on frostbitten feet to nudge each of them in a gesture of thanks and love. For the next nineteen years, he never stopped charming the people of Spencer with his enthusiasm, warmth, humility, (for a cat) and, above all, his sixth sense about who needed him most.

As his fame grew from town to town, then state to state, and finally, amazingly, worldwide, Dewey became more than just a friend; he became a source of pride for an extraordinary Heartland farming town pulling its way slowly back from the greatest crisis in its long history.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"The book is not only a tribute to a cat—anthropomorphized to a degree that can strain credulity—it's a love letter to libraries." - Publishers Weekly.

"Starred Review. Myron's beguiling, poignant, and tender tale of survival, loyalty, and love is an unforgettable study in the mysterious and wondrous ways animals, and libraries, enrich humanity." - Booklist.

"Intimate portrait of a place snugly set within its historical moment, preserved in Myron's understated, well-polished prose." - Kirkus Review.

"Starred Review." - Library Journal.

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Vicki Myron was born on a farm fifteen miles from Spencer, Iowa. At the age of thirty-four, after a failed marriage, single motherhood, and a stint on welfare,she graduated summa cum laude from Mankato State University and has a masters degree from Emporia State University. She worked at the Spencer Public Library for twenty-five years, the last twenty as director. She lives in Spencer, Iowa.

Bret Witter is a book editor and professional writer. Raised in north Alabama, he currently lives in Louisville, Kentucky, with his wife, two children and his fourteen-year-old cat Kiki. His other cat, Feasor, died four days after the completion of this book.

Dewey became such a celebrity that the New York Times ran his obituary.

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