Review: The Cat’s Table

The Cat’s Table
Michael Ondaatje
2011
McClelland & Stewart
978-0-7710-6864-5

In the 1950s, an eleven-year-old boy named Michael boards the Oronsay en route to England to reconnect with his mother, whom he has not seen for years. At mealtimes, he is seated at the Cat’s Table, about as far removed from the Captain’s Table as one can get. There, he meets a cast of eccentric characters, including two other boys who become his constant companions as they explore the secrets of the ship and its passengers.

I really enjoyed reading the tales of each member of the Cat’s Table, especially Miss Lasqueti, whose mild appearance belies hidden talents. Michael is an engaging narrator and the story flows smoothly. I wasn’t completely blown away by the novel but I did find it an interesting glimpse of a period in someone’s life and the impact people can have on us in even a short time

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