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Kitty Cornered: How Frannie and Five Other Incorrigible Cats Seized Control of Our House and Made It Their Home

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3.72  ·  Rating Details  ·  621 Ratings  ·  90 Reviews
Bob Tarte had his first encounter with a cat when he was two and a half years old. He should have learned his lesson then, from Fluffy. But as he says, “I listened to my heart instead, and that always leads to trouble.” In this tell-all of how the Tarte household grew from one recalcitrant cat to six—including a hard-to-manage stray named Frannie—Tarte confesses to allowin ...more
Paperback, 288 pages
Published April 10th 2012 by Algonquin Books (first published January 1st 2012)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,536)
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Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
Dec 21, 2011 Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Heather Nance
I finished reading this book yesterday and the first thing I thought of was, If you have cats, you will love this book. If you have animals in your home, you will love this book. If you need a good laugh, you will love this book.

I could not stop laughing as I read this story. Bob Tarte writes with sly humor about the trials of living with animals along with the impossibility of living without them. As I read along, I thought of a hundred people that I need to tell about this book. People who hav
...more
Elaine Campbell
Sep 23, 2012 Elaine Campbell rated it it was amazing
Bob Tarte is the only writer I know of who is both a humorist and a narrator of animal stories – true ones that he and his wife, Linda, have lived out firsthand under severe Michigan weather conditions and while having their own crosses to bear: Linda with a serious back problem and Bob who suffers emotionally at times. Yet they rise over and above difficult circumstances in this charming third newly-released book that followers of the Tarte's animal adventures will welcome with open arms.

This i
...more
Deborah Darsie
Jan 11, 2015 Deborah Darsie rated it it was ok
I stopped reading around page 125 or so, after struggling with myself for the last 40+ pages.

The stories of the cats and their behaviors were, for me, overwhelmed by the miasma of the authors repetitive refrain of the human's physical and emotional issues.

I found myself grumbling at the writer, despite the fact that I have experienced the depressive side as well. I have yet to have laughed out loud and decided I was going to call it 'good enough' and move on to the next book.
McGuffy Morris
May 14, 2012 McGuffy Morris rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Bob Tarte has a very inviting, open manner of writing. His sense of humour and honesty are key elements as he writes about animals, his life with them, and himself. He has been a favourite author of mine since I read his first book, “Enslaved by Ducks”, followed by “Fowl Weather”.

In “Kitty Cornered”, Bob takes us back to his Michigan home to tell us about life with his cats. Bob sees within each cat a life worth saving and a story worth telling. With his humorous but keen insight, we learn how e
...more
Cayr
Mar 22, 2012 Cayr rated it it was amazing
Bob Tarte is back to regale readers with more hilarious pet stories in his third and funniest book so far, Kitty Cornered. Tarte’s previous two books highlighted his hijinks with his unruly flock of hook bills, ducks, chickens, geese and a cast of oddball characters; none, perhaps, as odd as Tarte himself.

Tarte’s feathered friends take a back seat in Kitty Cornered, which is centered around the cats of the Tarte household. As the story unfolds, three cats share the author’s home, Moobie, Agnes a
...more
Jennifer
Feb 18, 2015 Jennifer rated it liked it
I was really torn on how to rate this book - if the rating system allowed, I think a 2.5 would be most appropriate. As a feline enthusiast and owner of 2 crazy but lovable cats myself, I had hoped to get more enjoyment out of this story. I did find some of the stories relatable and humorous. Others were just plain boring. The author's quirky, sarcastic sense of humor sometimes made me chuckle, and other times made me roll my eyes. What I found most grating though was his constant references to h ...more
Tessa Dick
Jul 13, 2012 Tessa Dick rated it it was amazing
While pawing out treats to my furry friends, I quote the oft-repeated line in Kitty Cornered (after telling a cat no to the demand for treats), "while wiping the cat treat dust off my hands".

It's always difficult, and often impawssible to refuse a cat anything. They're purrsistent.

Cats rule my life, but at least I can point to Bob Tarte as a total cat slave, while I still manage to resist some of the more unreasonable demands from my furry task-masters.

This book is hilarious most of the time,
...more
Joanne
Jul 14, 2012 Joanne rated it liked it
Shelves: 2012-books-read
This book starts with a ground-floor plan of Bob and Linda Tarte's home. There are indications of where things occur in this home, all related to the pets that this couple cohabitate with.
Bob and Linda are very into animals, with cats, birds, rabbits in the house and ducks and chickens in the barn.
Bob Tarte litters this book with the personalities of all the animals that encompass his life. There are cats already in the home, but more are acquired during the reading, including the one stray that
...more
Sonia Reppe
Jun 30, 2012 Sonia Reppe rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: cat owners + lovers
I am intrigued by cat behavior. I really liked the humor and the personal connection. This book wasn't just anecdotes, it was about Bob's life as a cat owner. He and his wife also have a lot of birds, and he wrote about that (Enslaved by Ducks). I haven't read it, and I probably won't, because I'm not that interested in birds, but if it falls into my hands I may read it because I liked Tarte's writing. Someday I will get more cats...
Jessica
May 28, 2012 Jessica rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, must-buy
I adored this book, especially since I have cats myself. I even found myself laughing out loud many times, which is very unusual for me. Bob Tarte is a fantastic writer and I feel like the animals are leaping off the pages as he tells the story. Can't wait to see where his next one takes us.
Jim Corbiere
Jul 16, 2014 Jim Corbiere rated it it was amazing
Finished reading " Kitty Cornered " by Bob Tarte. This is one way I can tell how behind I am on my reading. I purchased this book the day it came out....in 2012. I did enjoy this book a lot and, like any book revolving around animals, I had a hard time putting it down. I think any animal lover especially cat lovers, will really enjoy this book.

It isn't necessary to read the previous two books ( Enslaved By Ducks and Fowl Weather ) but it really does help to show how many animals the Tarte's real
...more
Beth
Aug 02, 2012 Beth rated it it was amazing
Love!
Christine
Feb 06, 2013 Christine rated it really liked it
If you are a cat lover, then you will enjoy Kitty Cornered. As someone who is owned by a cat, I could see bits of myself in some of the stories. The Tarte household is much more than just cats, they also ducks, chickens and other assorted animals but the main story was about how they acquired their cats or as many people say, how the cats acquired their humans. The stories were funny and poignant. I could actually place myself in his shoes in some of the story. The author is a work in progress h ...more
Jen A.
Nov 21, 2012 Jen A. rated it liked it
Shelves: 2012
Cute. Read this one as an advance copy, so there were some errors (one "far" was typed in as "fat"), and the editors will probably clean it up a bit more.

Tarte's observations toggled back and forth between witty, interesting and amusing to overly self-sabotaging. In a "comedy in contemporary culture" class that I took for my master's program, we examined the differences between comedians who either a) shoot other people down or b) shoot themselves down. Tarte is one of the latter, and sometimes
...more
Susan
Sep 17, 2012 Susan rated it liked it
I'd like to give this book 2.5 stars, rather than 3. I thought I was going to enjoy it as much as the $64 Tomato, but that book still wins hands down.
Tarte's observations about his cats (and his parrots, parakeets, ducks, chickens, geese) are mostly entertaining and familiar, but the overall effect of the book is whiny. I'm not talking out of school, he goes on (and on) about his depression and sluggishness.
As usual, I'm not sure what book the blurb writers on the cover read :) While there are m
...more
Ashley
Feb 19, 2013 Ashley rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In this tell all of how the Tarte household grew from one recalcitrant cat to six - including hard-to-manage stray named Frannie - Bob Tarte confesses to allowing these interlopers to shape his and his wife's life, from their dining habits to their sleeping arrangements to the placement and furriness of the furniture. But more than that, Bob begins seeing Frannie and the other cats as unlikely instructors in the art of achieving contentment - and realizes that sometimes wildness and mystery are ...more
Kate
Mar 21, 2015 Kate rated it really liked it
I give it an extra star because I'm a cat lover! Volunteering in the cat room of an animal shelter, my inner voice may have heckled him, but putting my scared-cat expertise aside, I love the journey he took the reader on to come to the aha moment every cat rescuer hopes for--loving and appreciating the cat on their terms is what forges the bond. If you're not a cat person, maybe you won't enjoy this on the same level, however, it is a well written book with wonderful self-deprecating humor.
Amanda
Jun 08, 2013 Amanda rated it really liked it
Would give it 3 1/2 stars if GoodReads allowed me to do so. It was a bit of a slow, gradual start, but once Tarte delved into the plot, this book about 5 quirky cats was amusing and easy to relate to as I have 2 amiable and unique cats of my own. I really enjoyed how Tarte illustrated each cat's personality and their friendships with one another through funny anecdotes. A good, quick, and easy read that only took me 2 weeks to finish - and this was during the school semester.
Ariel
Jun 21, 2016 Ariel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was really cute. :) I enjoyed getting to meet all his delightfully quirky cats.
Jeanne
Jun 22, 2012 Jeanne rated it really liked it
If you're an animal lover and haven't yet read any of Bob Tarte's books, you need to rush right out and get the first one, "Enslaved by Ducks." That was followed by "Fowl Weather," and then his latest, "Kitty Cornered." He is laugh-out-loud funny and his tales of how he went from not having any pets to having over 50, ducks, geese, parrots, canaries, rabbits, and cats are quite charming and endearing.
Ellen
Oct 02, 2014 Ellen rated it liked it
I found this a fun book but I think these people are insane. I can't fathom why anyone would want to live with 6 cats, parakeets, parrots, geese, ducks, chickens etc....
We live with 3 cats and a dog but even we have limits of tolerance for their behavior. I guess I should say that I am glad that there are people like this in the world to rescue these animals.
Billy
May 06, 2013 Billy rated it liked it
Fun to know that I'm not alone. A nice read exploring the unique and individual personalities, in the most literal sense, of our animal companions. I quickly recognized the things we do and the why we do them in Mr. Tarte's account. And maybe it will help me be just that little bit more patient with the kitten.
Ashley
May 20, 2015 Ashley rated it liked it
While I loved all the kitty characters, Bob and his wife were a little too fruity for me. I've decided bird people are a special level of nuts above cat people. And I hate birds.
Mycala
Feb 15, 2014 Mycala rated it really liked it
Part heartwarming stories of beloved pets, part laugh out loud what-in-gods-name-were-they-thinking to take on more and more cats, this book was a lot of fun to read. I can't begin to imagine being responsible for such a menagerie of farm animals, birds, bunnies, and cats -- 50 in all -- but I tip my hat to anyone with this much heart.

If there's one thing I've learned about cats, it's that no two are alike and that their odd quirks can be amusing, maddening, fascinating -- sometimes all three si
...more
Riccol
The cover blurb that described this as "laugh-out-loud" funny had me expecting, off course, a humorous tale. I didn't find it funny; any levity that might have been was obscured for me by the author's glumness. That said, it wasn't all bad for a quick read.
Carol
Mar 25, 2013 Carol rated it really liked it
If you are a cat lover, you will love this book. Otherwise, you will think Bob and wife Linda are just plain nuts. Fortunately I am one of the former and could find myself and several cats I have shared my life with in these pages. A fun, light read.
Rich Wagner
Sep 13, 2014 Rich Wagner rated it liked it
This was an okay book.I think it shined more when it focused more on the animals but suffered when the author spent so much time worrying about everything.Still worth a read if you are a cat lover as there are many lol moments
Susan Amati
Feb 26, 2013 Susan Amati rated it really liked it
This book clearly defined the relationships between people and cats. As well as cats and cats. A real page turner and I laughed out loud several times. A great read that doesn't take much time at all.
Malerie
Jan 24, 2015 Malerie rated it really liked it
Shelves: memoir
always a mood lifter with laughter on every page, Tarte is well accomplished in the best sort of self deprecation and I just love his writing style.
N.
Apr 12, 2012 N. rated it really liked it
4.5/5 - Really enjoyed this memoir about how the author became the owner of 6 cats.
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Bob Tarte lives on the edge of a mink-infested, shoe-sucking swamp in West Michigan with his long suffering wife, Linda. Bob is the author of the books "Kitty Cornered," "Enslaved by Ducks," and "Fowl Weather."

Every Friday from 12:30-1:00 pm ET, one of the cats from "Kitty Cornered" answers lifestyle questions from other cats. Catch the LIVE cat comedy @BobTarte #Ask6Cats.
More about Bob Tarte...

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“That's because they're people, only smarter. They know us better than we know them, and a lot of them have a sense of humor. They're exactly like us minus our useless mental power and thumbs.” 0 likes
“linoleum at the base of the refrigerator. The pressure-fit plastic lid, which hadn’t withstood the pressure of impact, had rolled under parrot Bella’s cage. With hearing finely tuned to recognize the distinctive characteristics of tuna-packed-in-oil slopping across the floor, Lucy had materialized to lap up the chemical spill. “How did you get in here with the door closed?” Linda said to her. “I guess I let her in before I went outdoors.” It was my latest ploy to get Lucy to like me. Snoozing under the dining room table was her latest gesture of defiance toward house rules, and I was helping her get away with it. “She doesn’t even look at the birds.” 0 likes
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