#Fantasy Worth Reading: The Cat Who Would Be King #Bookreview

The Cat Who Would Be King by Bethany Hoeflich is a humorous novella about an alleycat's accidental rise to the top of society.

From the blurb:

The sky is blue.

Water is wet.

And cats most definitely do not talk.

Reporter Thomas Kane knows that boring articles don’t sell newspapers, and as the newest hire at the Daily Gazette, he’s always on the lookout for a tantalizing story to write. When he gets a tip about an interview with Bastien the First, the elusive and presumably dead king of Qar, Thomas assumes it’s a cruel prank by jealous coworkers determined to see him fail.

As a cat, life is far superior for Bastien than his two-legged counterparts. Bastien has settled nicely into retirement where he enjoys a quiet life as a pampered tavern cat while keeping his true identity a secret. Obscurity has its downsides, however, and it’s time for his extraordinary story to be told.

My thoughts:

Bastien the cat has decided it's time to tell his story. And what a story. It seems Bastien's life as a wharf-prowling feline is over when a wizard acquires him for experimentation. The wizard doesn't expect him to survive and tells him so, but Bastien not only survives the experiment, he gains the ability to talk in human speech.

At first the wizard is pleased. He believes he has the perfect spy to serve his mysterious plans. However, the wizard soon discovers that cats rarely do what others want them to do. As the wizard reveals the depths of his evilness, Bastien discovers that the kingdom is tottering on a knife edge. Bastien proves to be the right cat at the right time.

Hoeflich does a wonderful job portraying Bastien's perspective. The reader gets a very credible cat's-eye-view of the wharfs and the castle. The contrast between the characters of Bastien and the wizard is also well done. Bastien searches for kindness and a good meal while the wizard exhibits a maniacal obsession with political power. If you like cats and some humor with your fantasy, you'll enjoy The Cat Who Would Be King

Story links:

Goodreads  Amazon


  1. This sounds like so much fun! When I play a wizard, I never pick a cat as a familiar. I just know better. ;)

  2. Seems only fitting for a cat to have a role as king. I can imagine that children would find Bastian fascinating, and soon be giggling at his/her/its antics.

  3. This one sounds like an imaginative and fun saga.


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