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A Street Cat Named Bob: How One Man and His Cat Found Hope on the Streets (Bob The Cat #1)

3.95  ·  Rating Details ·  22,759 Ratings  ·  3,082 Reviews
The moving, uplifting true story of an unlikely friendship between a man on the streets and the ginger cat who adopts him and helps him heal his life.
Hardcover, 279 pages
Published March 1st 2012 by Hodder & Stoughton
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Anu Vuokko It's not very eloquently written as the author isn't a professional writer. But I think it would be weird if the author used long, eloquent sentence…moreIt's not very eloquently written as the author isn't a professional writer. But I think it would be weird if the author used long, eloquent sentence structures since it is written from the view of an ex-homeless, recovering drug-addict. It's all about the story.(less)
Christina It is about an ex-drug addict so I think it depends on the child. If the child already knows about drugs and that they are at least bad for your Body,…moreIt is about an ex-drug addict so I think it depends on the child. If the child already knows about drugs and that they are at least bad for your Body, than I think a 10 year old could totally read this. As it is a very nice Story. But If drugs and homelesness is a totally new Topic I would probally wait one or two years.(less)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Apr 24, 2012 Sarah rated it really liked it
Please don't think me churlish, but I will kick off by saying that this book is not terribly well crafted - it's repetitive and poorly copy edited. So, if you're snobby about writing, I suggest you give it a miss. That said, it'll be your loss, as it is a heartwarming book with an important message, for reasons other than its prose.

Bowen describes how he was `invisible' when he was homeless, and the difference it made when he found Bob and took him busking with him. Suddenly people - the public
May 14, 2012 Tracy rated it it was amazing
Looking through the reviews for this book there is a lot of hype against the writing so I won't bother writing anything about it, you'll see for yourself!
I loved this book for so many reasons!
Living in Britain (Probably anywhere, in fact) There is a lot of irritation and even anger towards homeless people, it's very close-minded and I think ANYONE could benefit from reading this book. You see it from a whole new perspective and I do believe Bob makes that easier. Humans seem to find it easier t
Jul 10, 2016 Sharon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own-read
James Bowden was a homeless man living on the streets of London struggling with a drug addiction. During the day he would do busking to make a bit of money to support himself. Having spent time in hostels for the homeless, he was finally given his own flat.

On returning back home one day James finds a ginger Tom cat outside his flat. It is from this day on that the pair forms a special attachment to one another. James decides to name the cat Bob, and on most days when James started out busking B
Feb 04, 2013 Dem rated it liked it
This is a wonderful feel good true story about a street Cat named Bob and his owner a recovering heroin addict and the streets of London.

I don’t read books about animals but this sure pulled at my heart strings and made me realise everybody should experience the love of a pet at least once in their lives.

This is a story of love and devotion and how sometimes we are sent little signs of help and encouragement we just have to learn how to recognise them and I am sure that James was so happy that
Claire Martin
Dec 08, 2012 Claire Martin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Firstly, as many people have mentioned, this book is not exactly well written, but it is a true and honest account of James & Bobs life - it isn't romanticised, or dramatised, it is what it is. I hear they are making a movie, and I hope they keep this natural account without making it too Hollywood.

I have however given it a 4* just for the happy story that it is. A story about true companionship, and not only that, but how unique Bob is himself. I have had cats all my life, and I am pretty s
Corey Dutson
Jul 19, 2012 Corey Dutson rated it really liked it
I actually met James and Bob a couple years ago around Covent Garden. Both of them are wonderfully brilliant characters in their own right. Back then, I recall him telling me and Theresa about a book that he was putting out, but I didn't really give it much thought.

Fast-forward to a month ago, and what do I find in a bookstore but a stack of this book! I'm so happy he actually managed to get it out there for everyone to read.

This is an warming, enjoyable book that is both heart-felt as well as e
Aug 27, 2013 Beth rated it really liked it
One of the good things about this book is that the cat doesn't die. All the best stories about beloved animals end w/ the inevitable, and, while I know all sweet pets die, I'd just rather they didn't do it in their own book. Another really good thing is that Bob is a real cat. I know that because I liked his Facebook page, which is totally current, and watched some videos of him on YouTube, and even saw him and James on the Today Show. Yes, I know, if some people believe the moon landing was fak ...more
Martin Belcher
Jan 15, 2013 Martin Belcher rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2013
James Bowen was a homeless man living on the streets of London, addicted to drugs and in a bad way, eventually after spending time in homeless hostels he was given his own flat in sheltered accommodation block in North London. One day in 2007 a chance meeting with a ginger Tom cat that James decided to call "Bob" would change and turnaround his life. This is a charming, lovely, heart-warming true story of young man busking in central London along with his new companion the street cat Bob. They s ...more
Jenny Lyon
I must admit I was torn before I read this book. I mean, I'm moggy obsessed, but also word mad, and had read a few reviews commenting on how poorly written this book is. Now I've finished it, I can quite safely say: some people are stupid.
This isn't meant to be a challenging read or a work of great literature. its a true, from-the-heart story about one man and his mog. I actually thought the simple narrative made it really easy to see what James thought of Bob - his excitable use of language wh
Yousra Serry
"I've come to believe in the power of animals. I believe they can heal, teach, and push us to be better people" - Neil Abramson in his book unsaid

This quote sums up this book pretty well.

James Bowen writes with great honesty and describes the life on the streets really well. I learned a lot of things from this book. things about animals, people, london. a lot really. he touched me and i felt really connected to him that at the end of the book i actually felt so proud of him for everything he ha
Dec 23, 2014 Hil rated it did not like it
I thought this book would be a heartwarming story of an interesting cat living through some tough times on the street, that would probably make me cry and probably end in the cat's death. In fact, the cat does not die by the end (which is a good thing!) and the cat is kind of incidental to the story, not the star. What we have here is a self-pitying tale of woe by a semi-homeless junkie who happens upon Bob the Cat outside his flat and they start hanging out together as he goes about his day to ...more
Apr 20, 2013 Holliekins rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favourites
As a huge cat lover, it will come as no surprise that the most inspirational and affecting book I have read so far this year is A Street Cat Named Bob by James Bowen. I first heard of James and Bob via their Twitter feed and couldn't wait to read their story, although I did have to wait as my local Waterstones had sold out within a few days of it being released!

James was living hand to mouth on the streets of London when he first met the injured ginger cat. He nursed him back to health and when
Apr 26, 2012 Kelly rated it it was amazing
As a cat lover and owner of exactly the same breed of cat as Bob when my friend in my Book club told me about this book I had to read it!.
This story is about James Bowen a recovering drug addict living in sheltered accommodation in London and making small amounts of money to survive the best way he can eg.busking and selling the Big Issue.
James one day returns home to find a ginger tom cat curled up in the hallway of his sheltered accommodation. James could not resist helping the cat he named Bo
Nov 11, 2012 Sophie rated it it was amazing
A lovely book. It's an emotional and touching personal story of a recovering drug addict getting his life back together, but there are also moments of humour, and I learned a lot too from the interesting insights into life on the streets and how the Big Issue works. This is a well told story with some beautifully painted moments that made me feel like I was there - the description was so vivid that my heart pounded in the dramatic passages and I cried in the emotional bits. Some other reviewers ...more
Oh my. This is a book that deserves every one of its five stars.

The title basically says it all. It's about a former drug user whose life is on the rebound and is adopted by a stray sickly ginger kitten. After many attempts to locate the cat's owner, James adopts "Bob" and they become inseparable; first as a feline sidekick while James 'busked' for spare change and later to his selling "the Big Issue" (a magazine published to help people get back on their feet and into the working world again wh
Megan Graff
Oct 15, 2012 Megan Graff rated it liked it
A year 6 student mentioned this book when I asked what he had read recently and enjoyed. A couple days later he brought it in for me to read. I picked it up last night expecting to read for 30 minutes or so before bed but I ended up staying up until I finished it. It isn't very well written but it is extremely heart warming to read about the relationship that develops between James (a recovering heroin junkie) and Bob the street cat who befriends him.

Today when I told the student that I finishe
This is really heart-warming.
This book follows James Bowen as he struggles to get out of his downward spiral and how a lost lonely kitty helped him do just that.
I can't even imagine how hard some days must have been for James, but I'm so glad that he felt that he had to help 'Bob'.
Bob himself is amazing; it really does seem that they were meant to find each other.
I have long known that the bond between human and feline can be strong and fulfilling, so too for our canine friends as well, but here
Lisa Fagg
Jan 06, 2013 Lisa Fagg rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

This is a fabulous book; uplifting, fresh, thoughtful and honest. Not every writer has a story to tell worth reading and not every book worth reading is written by a 'writer'. James' story makes for good reading and his style of writing invites the reader to sit down beside him and Bob and listen to what he has to say. There is a lot of living depicted in these pages - a life that is at times perhaps, like yours or mine. At other times James' life is almost unfathomable, almost unrecognisable a
Jul 13, 2016 Carmo rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Não costumo ler este tipo de livros. Tenho sempre a ideia de que não passam de tentativas de transformar um qualquer azar num dramalhão, apelando à solidariedade alheia no intuito de ganhar uns cobres. Sou desconfiada, fazer o quê?
Desta vez fui mais condescendente, e a culpa corresponde inteiramente à bolinha de pelo amarelo da capa. Afinal, um gato que permite que lhe ponham um cachecol ao pescoço, merece que lhe dediquemos algum do nosso tempo.
E foi um tempo bem entregue. Gatófila (eu sei que
Büşra Göç

Serinin devamını da okuyacağım.

Siz de okumalısınız.
Tempo de Ler
Jan 15, 2013 Tempo de Ler rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Uma existência nómada durante a infância privou James Bowen das bases que lhe permitiriam uma adaptação social normal, empurrando-o para os sentimentos de revolta que acabariam por transformar a sua adolescência num período de delinquência. James conta-nos, em A Minha História com Bob, como percorreu este caminho rumo à autodestruição, começando pelo consumo de drogas leves que culminou na saída da casa da mãe para a casa da meia irmã…daí para o sofá de amigos, casas abandonadas e, em última ins ...more
Dec 02, 2016 Angigames rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Questo è uno di quei libri in cui non è possibile non emozionarsi.
È un libro semplice, uno dei tanti che parlarono dello straordinario legame che si crea tra l’uomo e il suo animale domestico. Eppure questo libro è qualcosa di più, è un passo avanti, un gradino più in su rispetto ai suoi predecessori.
A Spasso con Bob è la storia di una vita. Una vita vera, tangibile, pulsante.
Una vita che però ha perso la sua strada ed è calata nel buio.
Una vita che non ha avuto ancora la sua occasione.
La p
Gavin Felgate
Feb 10, 2013 Gavin Felgate rated it it was amazing
This book tells a true story that made newspaper headlines, about how the writer, James Bowen, and his cat Bob became minor celebrities.

The story starts with James, who is homeless at the time, returning to his sheltered accommodation to find a cat outside his front door; believing him to belong to a neighbour, he initially ignores the cat, but it soon becomes apparent that the cat is a stray, and he sees James as a new master, and follows him around. Seeing him as a sort of kindred spirit, sinc
Morana Mazor
Mar 06, 2015 Morana Mazor rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Jednostavna, životna, a tako prekrasna i topla priča... Znam da samo subjektivno mogu doživjeti ovu knjigu, budući da i sama dijelim svoj život sa dvije mace, ali zaista mislim da "Fantastični mačak Bob" malo koga može ostaviti ravnodušnim.. Oni koje ne vole mačke, neće je niti uzeti u ruke..a svi ostali, sigurno će , kao i ja, od prve do posljednje stranice s cijelom paletom osjećaja proživljavati uspone i padove Jamesa I Boba..Posebno vlasnici kućnih ljubimaca koji će jako dobro prepoznati mno ...more
Jan 17, 2013 Andrew rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am usually not one for autobiographies and certainly not cute uplifting ones but this caught my eye - partly as its invovles a cat and I own (or is it owned by) four of them, but also I have followed their story through the national press some time ago (the events are 2007 onwards really). If you want a quick and uplifting read this is worth it. Just proves what wonders pets are and what they can give you back with just a little kindness and care.
Aug 14, 2013 Linda rated it it was amazing
An enormous feel good book that makes you laugh, cry and look differently at people who have to make their money on the street. It also makes you realize again how enormously important love and responsibility are to keep people on the straight and narrow. Loved this book!

When the author finds a young, injured, ginger tomcat on his London-Tottenham doorstep he initially does not want to let him in as he is struggling with his own life as an ex-heroin addict on methadone, just living in a sheltere
Jan 03, 2013 catherine rated it really liked it
This book is engaging enough for me to have finished it within two days, which is a good sign! I don't much like biographies as I don't understand people who want to write about themselves; today almost everyone feels as though they have something interesting to say, that they can write down the secrets to life within a certain number of pages, or that in order to feel as though they are worth something, they need to write about themselves and have over a thousand people read their words, be it ...more
May 18, 2012 Sammi rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Anyone! animal lovers, somone who wants to find out about life on the street.
Recommended to Sammi by: My boyfriend
It waa a very refreshing read in an autobiographical sense. A Street Cat Named Bob is the autobiography of James Bowen's life on the street, and the story of the friend he find's in a cat he names Bob.

I must admit Bob never stops amazing me in this book, he is so intelligent and loyal! I'd love to meet him myself and I can see why everyone who encounters Bob loves him, too.
The book is witty, sad, and very honest. James admits everything in this book, and since he met Bob just like in life - thi
Mar 13, 2015 Laila rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: story
O kadar keyifliydi ki bir kaç saat içinde bitti. :)

Gundelik hayatın zorluklarına direnen Bob ve James'in hikayesi.

(view spoiler)
Sep 18, 2015 Tonkica rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Lijepa istinita prica o posebnom prijateljstvu. Za promjenu jos i pozitivna!
Lagano stivo za jedno popodne uz kavicu, mozda na plazi.. Od mene preporuka!
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the Goodreads database with this name.

James Bowen is an author and musician currently based in London. He is author of A Street Cat Named Bob, which tells his life story.

James Bowen was born in Surrey in 1979. Following his parents’ divorce, he moved to Australia with his mother and stepfather. Home life was tense and, because the family moved frequ
More about James Bowen...

Other Books in the Series

Bob The Cat (3 books)
  • The World According to Bob: The Further Adventures of One Man and His Street-wise Cat
  • A Gift from Bob: How a Street Cat Helped One Man Learn the Meaning of Christmas

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“Cats are notoriously picky about who they like. And if a cat doesn’t like its owner it will go and find another one. Cats do that all the time.” 43 likes
“Living on the streets of London strips away your dignity, your identity − your everything, really. Worst of all, it strips away people’s opinion of you. They see you are living on the streets and treat you as a non-person. They don’t want anything to do with you. Soon you haven’t got a real friend in the world.” 20 likes
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