Sunday, March 22, 2009

Best Tag Line Ever.

Andre Norton & Dorothy Madlee, Arch Paperbacks, 1978

Best tag line ever: Jim and Elly Mae must save their cat friends from killer robots.

Not long ago, my pal Jennifer and I were reminiscing old books from our childhood and she reminded me of this Andre Norton novel which we both read. I was trying to find out the title of one of the scariest books from my past, one that involved aliens taking over earth in a kind of body snatcher way and the last lines of the book involved the main character turning to her friend who now had "jelly eyes" which was apparently the sign that the baddies had taken over the body. Still don't know what that one was... anyone out there have a clue? Anyway... pardon the digression.

Star Ka'at World is apprently the second book in the series, but it's the only one I've read. In this one, Jim and Elly Mae are taken from earth by their cat companions who are more than house cats, they are part of an alien race called Ka'ats. These "cats" can communicte using their minds and in ancient times on Earth they coexisted quite nicely with humans. Over time, humans changed and were unable to understand the Ka'ats and to adapt to these changes the Ka'ats changed too, learning to hunt and survive in new ways. Some even forgot their mind communication skills. Now a fresh wave of Ka'ats have come to earth to liberate their cat friends and they discover there are still humans who can communicate with them.

Both Jim and Elly Mae are orphaned and have limited ties to others on Earth and so they are willing to embark on this space voyage. The world of the Ka'ats is quite different: green skies, different smells, food you think into creation using their special machine that you instruct with your mind. I started rereading it last night and would have kept going if I could have stayed awake. I am not really sure how it ends. I know the humans begin to regret their stay in the Star Ka'at World. And it sounds like there is some serious robot crisis going on. I may have to pick this one up again soon.

I've actually had a bit of a fear of talking cats. I had a dream once in which I was being stalked and terrorized by a large black cat who could communicate telepathically. I've never quite trusted cats since that night. I wonder if that bizarre nightmare has its roots in these books? Probably more likely in Edgar Allen Poe's short story. "The Black Cat."

Here are the book titles in the Star Ka'at series:
* Star Ka`at (1976) Collection of Stories with Dorothy Madlee
* Star Ka`at World (1978) Collection of Stories with Dorothy Madlee
* Star Ka`at's and the Plant People (1979) Collection of Stories with Dorothy Madlee
* Star Ka`at's and the Winged Warriors (1981) Collection of Stories with Dorothy Madlee

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