There’s this awesome dude named Sherwin Tjia who throws awesome events in Toronto and Montreal (sometimes in Ottawa). He’s organized slow dances, and crowd karaoke, and strip spelling bees, and cardboard fort building nights. The last might have been my favourite, because of who I met there, though the spelling bees have boobies.
This weekend he launched his new book called You Are A Cat. It’s a sendup of the Choose Your Own Adventure books all ’80s children knew and loved. However, it’s different than the ’80s books from what I remember. As a child I don’t remember those books having much in the way of heavy subject matters, but Tjia’s book certainly does. The protagonist, you, a cat, gets to choose what cat-like activities you wish to enjoy.
You live with a dysfunctional family, and while you as a cat do not necessarily understand all the nuances of their lives, the reader can certainly understand it.
Where the book lacks is in the character development. The reader1 only gets a very brief glimpse into who these people are, and the heavy events in their lives. As a cat, you’re obviously an observer of these events, but as a human reading the book, you do want to know more about these decisions. During my reading I mostly stayed indoors, as I found the humans’ lives to be the most interesting.
The good thing is I know I have another few reads of the book, where the adventure will be very different.
- Too passive of a word, the picker? [↩]