Welcome to the book blog of writer and creative writing tutor, Diane Paul.

Thanks to the publishers and kind PR people who send me books and releases about their clients' books for review. Press releases and review copies of fiction and non-fiction are always welcome. (No sci-fi, fantasy or erotica please.)

Due to the barrage of requests from self-published authors for reviews, I'm unable to deal with them all, although I'm sometimes drawn to non-fiction for the subject matter. And because I love print books, the smell, the touch of the paper and the sight of the words, I don't have an electronic reader or review e-books.

E-mail to: bookblogforbookworms@keywordeditorial.com for the postal address.

My writing website: http://www.keywordeditorial.com/

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Cat poems raise money for care of strays in Fuerteventura

This is Tunachunks. Tunachunks lives at a hotel in the Canary Islands, where the editor of this wonderful anthology of cat poems, writer Alison Chisholm stays on holiday. 'She moves in with us for treats and titbits but disappears the moment the cases appear and we start to pack,' says Alison. At that point, the hotel entertainer takes over her welfare. Tunachunks is an El Capitan cat, so she enjoys veterinary care and will always be looked after.

Cat Lines has been compiled to raise funds for El Capitan, the charity that funds the care of Fuerteventura's stray and feral cats and there are lots of them. So if you're over there and you spot a cat with a slightly trimmed left ear, you will know it's being cared for by El Capitan and that their cat-loving volunteers are keeping an eye out for it. The charity makes sure the cats are neutered, has set up Cat Feeding Stations, encourages the adoption of cats and tries to create a better understanding of their plight among the residents.

The poems, all 52 of them, including two of Alison's, have been dedicated to the memory of Orlando, described as 'A Cat with Attitude'. And if you're a cat lover, how could you resist such titles as, Fried Mouse Anyone? Break a Paw Darling, Fat Cat, A Cat Called Audrey, A Kitten for Christmas or The Cat in the Wardrobe. I love the Shape poem, If You Were Mine, written in the shape of a cat - very clever.

As they're all copyright of the individual poets, who donated their work to the charity, the only one I can reproduce here is, yes you've guessed it, my own. I don't usually write poetry, so was delighted when Alison included What Creeps in the Night? And followers may recognise Harry the Cat, who is currently turning round in circles on the patio, (only he knows why) and Black Bertha, aka Spawn of the Devil, who inhabits my filing tray and steals his food.

What Creeps in the Night?

Black Bertha creeps up to the window
Peers into the house, is he there?
Harry watches from the top of the stairs
Not today lady, not today he swears.

Today he is king of his corner,
His green grape eyes flash, she waits poised
Big Bertha's mane gleams silk in the sunlight
A movement with his paw, whoosh she takes flight.

Licks her shirtfront, black like a mineshaft
Unsure of strategy, action
Watches the house from the dense hawthorn hedge
Sleep little one on your carpeted ledge.

The moon laughs, gleams goodbye to the sun
Black Bertha prowls on silent paws
To the window, she heaves at the catdoor
A leap and feet skid on the marbled floor.

Harry the Cat snores soundly, roundly
The black furball, low to the ground
Slithers to the richness, smell of the sea
'So sorry my dear, this is meant for me'.

So if that hasn't put you off and you'd like to support El Capitan and the sterling work they are doing for the island's cats, you can buy a copy of Cat Lines in the UK from 53 Richmond Road, Birkdale, Southport, Merseyside PR8 4SB, price £4.50 plus p/p £1, plus an extra 30p p/p for each additional copy. Cheques should be made payable to Alison Chisholm. Copies can also be bought in Fuerteventura, in hotels, bars and a craft stall in Caleta de Fuste, and some in Germany, suggested minimum donation 5 Euros.

El Capitan animal project can be contacted at Lichtenbroicher Weg 8a, 40472 Dusseldorf. www.animal-project.de/ email: info@animal-project.de

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