Here, Kitty Kitty

Following up on my last blog post, I invited author Elaine Landau to guest blog about her experience in writing The Best Cats Ever series. Here’s Elaine! –Sara Hoffmann, Senior Editor

90728119[1] The poet E. E. Cummings once wrote, “A cat is a cat is a cat.” That now-famous saying implies that all cats are pretty much alike. However, some cat owners might strongly disagree. While most cats may use a litter box and purr when content, I’ve discovered some interesting differences among our feline friends. How did I do this? I’m the lucky nonfiction writer who got to research and write Lerner’s new cat series, The Best Cats Ever (cover pictured, left).

I had just finished The Best Dogs Ever series when the cat assignment came in. I was thrilled! I’d loved writing about all those wonderful woofers, and now I was about to enter the cat world for what would prove to be an unexpectedly fascinating visit.

It turned out that all the info needed was right at the heart of kitty land. As with the dog book series, I got to interview various breeders, show judges, and veterinarians. Many of the facts I came across were intriguing. Here are just a few favorites:

● Do you know why ragdoll cats are called ragdolls? It’s because when you pick up these cute (though somewhat oversized) kitties, they really relax in your arms. Their bodies become limp and floppy, just like a rag doll.

● Think the wrinkly, nearly-bald sphynx cat comes from Egypt? Think again! Its only connection to Egypt is its name. The breed is named after the famous Egyptian sculpture—The Great Sphinx of Giza.

● What cat would make a super track star? How about the Egyptian mau? At times, it’s reached speeds of about 30 miles per hour!

I had a great time researching and compiling facts like these for the Best Cats Ever series. Hopefully, young readers will have just as much fun reading about these terrific cat breeds!