The Cat Who Saved Books
by Sosuke Natsukawa (2017); trans. Louise Heal Kawai; audiobook read by Kevin Shen (Picador, 2021)
The cat gives off Alice in Wonderland vibes and there’s a dark, almost elegiac edge to the book-rescuing missions it cajoles teenage shut-in Rintaro Natsuki into undertaking. Through Rintaro’s coming of age, Natsukawa expresses love for and extols the virtues of books.