The Lunar Cats

Written by Lynne Truss
Review by Charlotte Wightwick

This is a novel about the fight between good and evil, of well-meaning retired librarians and adorable demon kittens. Alec Charlesworth, ex-librarian, occasional historical researcher and sometime fighter of Evil Talking Cats (or ETCs, as we should properly call them), just wants a quiet life. But there are odd stories of giant cats in a graveyard in Bromley, a mysterious client who wants him to research the feline element of Captain Cook’s voyages, and, to top it all off, a tiny abandoned kitten in the snow. Thankfully, he has a group of 18th-century amateur scientists to help him (yes, they’re cats too). And his dog (who isn’t). So begins the wonderfully entertaining new novel from Lynne Truss, a follow-up to her 2014 Cat Out of Hell, although you don’t need to have read the previous book to enjoy The Lunar Cats. It is a glorious pastiche of 18th-century conceits (scientific societies focused on the obscure and the bizarre, casual misogyny and dry-as-dust travel journals) and of the modern thriller (will the stew-scented Demon Kitten’s Henchwoman subject poor Watson The Dog to unknown tortures if Alec doesn’t sign his soul away to The Devil?)

This book is laugh-out-loud funny, clever and joyous. To my mind, it was absolutely purr-fect (many apologies, but I couldn’t resist).