HOME SCHOOL BOOK REVIEW
Book: The Cat Who Killed Lilian Jackson Braun: A Parody
Author: Robert Kaplow
Publisher: Millennium Press, 2003
Language level: 5 (vulgar, obscene language)
Reading Level: adults only! (and not fit for them!)
Rating: 0 stars (NOT RECOMMENDED)
Reviewed by Wayne S. Walker
Kaplow, Robert. The Cat Who Killed Lilian Jackson Braun: A Parody (published in 2003 by New Millennium Press, 301 N. Canon Dr., Suite #214, Beverly Hills, CA 90210). "Warning! Warning! Danger, Will Robinson!" (Does that tell you how old I am and what I was watching on television when I was young?). Good mysteries are not only fun to read but they can help young people develop good reasoning skills. Some of you may be familiar with "The Cat Who…" books by Lilian Jackson Braun. My wife Karen, who likes good mysteries, has read nearly all of them. Even our son Mark, seventeen, who is very picky about what he reads, has said that he has enjoyed them. My father, who, unfortunately, is NOT very picky about what he reads, gave us a copy of this book. Please be advised that it is nothing like the novels by Mrs. Braun. The cover calls this a "bawdy parody," and bawdy is certainly right! Karen read the first chapter, put the book aside, and warned me about it.
I read just the first chapter to see for myself, and she was correct. On page 2 the "f" word is used. There are numerous references to Braun’s supposed relationship with a "gay bar" and the "gay male population." And at the close of chapter 1, the hero of the book, James MacIntosh Qafka (the real Mrs. Braun’s hero is named James Quillen), a writer of children’s books (whose earlier "Little Blivet" books were said to have been popular, but his updated and more diverse, books like Little Blivet has Three Daddies were ignored–thankfully!) is specifically said to have gone into his bedroom and "violently m********ed" — the usual term for self stimulation. While I understand that all this is fiction, it is still revolting and disgusting.
Publishers Weekly said, "In this wildly funny, biting satire…the zingers come quickly…the copious puns range from the simple to the elaborate…the reading public may read and roar." Obviously, Publishers Weekly has absolutely no sense of common decency whatever. One reviewer at Barnes and Noble wrote, “This hilarious tongue-in-cheek poke at Lillian Jackson Braun’s ‘Cat Who…’ series is not for the average fan. You have to be willing to laugh at yourself and not take the world too seriously.” However, I must not be the only person who found this book totally lacking in humor and decency. Another reviewer said, “This book is NOT funny. It’s stupid and disgusting.” My advice is to stay as far away from this author as possible.