Book Review: The Zen of Max by Lou Belcher

I love reading books about cats who have changed their human’s life, and I had looked forward to reading The Zen of Max:  (a memoir of great wisdom and many naps).  It probably wasn’t coincidence that I ended up reading it on the second anniversary of Buckley’s passing.

I’m well aware how much a cat can change your life when you least expect it, and I thoroughly enjoyed reading Lou Belcher’s memoir about the sixteen years she shared with Max.  Max was by Lou’s side through happy moments and sad ones, through challenges and loss, and along the way, he taught her a few things about life.    The bond between Max and the author comes through in every word, and you will smile as you think about the bond with your own cats, both past and present.

The entire book touches the heart, but one of the most moving passages for me was when the author moves to Florida to be closer to her ailing mother.  Max provides support and comfort not only to Lou as she deals with the logistical and emotional challenges of her mother’s declining health, but he also works his cat magic on Lou’s mother.  I loved reading about how this usually somewhat clumsy cat was able to manage his energy and be gentle around a fragile, older woman.

This is the kind of book that you will want to savor as you follow Max and Lou’s journey, and you’ll find yourself chuckling at some of the lessons, and reflecting on others.  Highly recommended for all cat lovers.

And if you’re looking for a purrfect last minute gift for a cat lover on your list, Amazon can still get this book to you or the recipient in time for Christmas!

Lou Belcher was Max’s food human, assistant, staff person, or human bean, depending on your orientation to such things. She took Max into her home and her heart when he was almost two years and freely admits she learned many valuable lessons from him about love and life. Lou is a freelance writer, editor, and blogger. She devotes time to supporting artists and writers through two of her blogs; and she supports animal adoption efforts through the blog she set up for Max. A portion of the proceeds from this book will go to agencies devoted to finding forever homes for pets.

This book was sent to me by the author.

14 Comments on Book Review: The Zen of Max by Lou Belcher

  1. Tracy
    December 23, 2010 at 10:27 am (9 years ago)

    Ahhh, loved hearing about this book and certainly a must read; anything about cats or dogs will do. But I came over to visit from Max’s blog and while i was here I read about the post yesterday about pet loss and the holidays. I invite you to read a blog that contains an excerpt from a book of mine that is being published but we are still devastated by the loss told in that story! I think you’ll be touched…below is that link:

    http://thinkingspot-tracy.blogspot.com/2010/12/my-life-as-dogand-christmas.html

    Again, thank you for the nice visit!

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      December 23, 2010 at 12:14 pm (9 years ago)

      Thanks for stopping by Tracy. I loved your story, and I’m so very sorry about Ginger. I can’t even imagine how devastating that must have been. My heart goes out to you. I hope memories of Ginger bring some smiles and not just sadness this holiday season.

      Please keep me posted about your book!

      Reply
  2. Layla Morgan Wilde AKA Boomer Muse
    December 22, 2010 at 11:49 pm (9 years ago)

    This looks like it’s up my alley!

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      December 23, 2010 at 12:12 pm (9 years ago)

      I think you’ll enjoy this one, Layla.

      Reply
  3. Angie, Catladyland/Katt Food
    December 22, 2010 at 6:03 pm (9 years ago)

    Wonderful! I am a fan of Max’s blog and can’t wait to read the book. Cats touch our lives in an infinite number of ways — this would be a great gift book 🙂

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      December 22, 2010 at 9:50 pm (9 years ago)

      Angie, I think this book makes a wonderful gift for cat lovers.

      Reply
  4. Mr Puddy
    December 22, 2010 at 3:56 pm (9 years ago)

    Thank you for the review.
    My mom just got it delivery yesterday, she can’t wait to read it

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      December 22, 2010 at 9:49 pm (9 years ago)

      I know your mom will enjoy the book, Mr. Puddy. Maybe she’ll even read it to you!

      Reply
  5. Max the Quilt Cat
    December 22, 2010 at 12:53 pm (9 years ago)

    Ingrid… Lou and I thank you so much for your review of the book. What a wonderful thing.

    Max

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      December 22, 2010 at 9:49 pm (9 years ago)

      My pleasure, Max and Lou!

      Reply
  6. Marg
    December 22, 2010 at 10:52 am (9 years ago)

    Super review and I loved the book too. I totally agree about the moment when Max visits the Mother. I love the fact that she would carry Max up and down the steps. What a great cat he was except for riding in the car but then most cats do scream in the car. I really enjoyed this book.

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      December 22, 2010 at 12:53 pm (9 years ago)

      Max was a very special, cat, wasn’t he, Marg.

      Reply
  7. The Great Noodles
    December 22, 2010 at 9:11 am (9 years ago)

    As a long time pal of Max and a HUGE supporter of his food human LB (she’s my food human when we’re on vacation) I couldn’t agree more. This is truly a great season to be sharing such a lovely sentiment and a joyful message about how we felines can truly rock a food human’s socks. Fantastic review – I love the book too!

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      December 22, 2010 at 12:52 pm (9 years ago)

      Glad you like the review, Great Noodles. It is a wonderful book.

      Reply

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