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One-Eyed Cat
Paula Fox
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One-Eyed Cat

3.35 of 5 stars 3.35  ·  rating details  ·  1,006 ratings  ·  79 reviews
Ned fired one shot from the forbidden gun. But someone -- a face, fleetingly seen staring at him from an attic window -- was watching. When a one-eyed cat turns up in an elderly neighbor's yard, Ned is caught in a web of guilt, fear, and shame that infects every aspect of his life. Paula Fox's haunting and thought-provoking Newbery Honor novel is an unforgettable classic.
Published by Turtleback Books (first published 1984)
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This is well-written, but has such a sad, quiet guilt infused into the story that I didn't find it pleasant to read. Although I did really like Ned's neighbor, old Mr. Scully, and Ned's friendship with him. The ending is very sweet which made me like the whole book a lot more.

I never realized people could be so debilitated from rheumatoid arthritis. I felt sorry for Ned's mom. She seemed like quite the character when she was having one of her better days. I'd also never heard of gold salts (chry
In my quest to read more Newbery Medal/Newbery Honor books I spied this book at the library and promptly devoured it. Just maybe the fact that it had "cat" in its title made me more apt to choose this one over another.

Neddy is the a son of a pastor and a homebound mother with rheumatoid arthritis before there were any medications for it.

The angelic father, the pious and unlikeable housekeeper/cook "He opened his mouth and she said at once, before he could speak, 'Calm down, calm down.' He hated
I currently temp at a hospital administrative building, so I don't know anyone and I'm not looking to forge any lasting relationships. This gives me plenty of reading time during lunches and breaks, and I limit my work reading choices to the paperbacks available in a plastic "take one/leave one" bin in my building's cafeteria, both because I know I'll forget or misplace any books I bring from home, and because I enjoy forcing myself to read material I might not normally gravitate toward in the f ...more
Richard Houchin
This is the first book I can remember reading that I absolutely hated. I hate this book. It is seared, seared into my memory. If I could give it negative stars, I would.
One-Eyed Cat is a fine humane education selection, particularly for public and school libraries in rural areas where a child's first BB gun is a rite of passage.

Despite being forbidden to do so by his father, young Ned sneaks out one night for some target practice with his new Daisy rifle. Without thinking, he fires at a creeping, shadowy figure. When he later spots a wounded cat who is missing one eye, the boy is haunted by guilt.

Fox explores big themes like taking responsibility for one's ac
Nathan Johnson
This was one of the books that made me wary of trusting anything with a Newberry award.
I hate this book, it is easily one of the 5 worst books I have ever read.
The main character spends the entire book feeling massive guilt for something he isn't even sure he did.
I felt little sympathy for his guilt in disobeying his father and taking the BB gun. I felt that his father was portrayed as rather overbearing and paranoid. Which prevented him from teaching Ned how to responsibly use his gift.

He was a
Sandra Stiles
For his 11th birthday Ned's uncle gives him a Daisy air-rifle. Ned's father, a preacher, doesn't approve of the gun and puts it away in the attic until Ned turns 14. Ned has always been respectful to his preacher father and his arthritic mother. He has never really been disobedient, until now. He sneaks up into the attic and brings the rifle down. He just wants to fire it once and then he will gladly put it away. He sees a shadow near the barn and shoots. As he turns to go in the house he sees a ...more
I liked this book though the tone was melancholy throughout. I think it would be difficult to get kids to read this today; there isn't much action - except in the young boy's head. Essentially, a young boy whose mother is practically bedridden with rheumatoid arthritis is given a gun for his birthday. His father, a local minister, feels he is too young for the weapon and puts it in the attic until he is older. The boy cannot resist, sneaks the gun out late one night and probably shoots a cat in ...more
This book to me was beautifully written, but the religious agenda got tiresome. Ned's father is a reverend, first of all. Which, at first, seems merely like his occupation, not meant to consume the story. It doesn't, but the constant allusions to pain and suffering, whether the cat's, the mother's, or Mr. Scully's (which were consistently paralleled) became an obvious outlet for Fox to incorporate a healing process. Mr. Scully, the cat, and Mrs. Wallis all regress in their illness during the cha ...more
Amy Flink
This is a sweet, beautiful, wonderful book. I think it is a children's/ young adult type book, for advanced young readers. I think it is pretty deep. Seems like a lot of reading but very good. It takes place in the Depression era.

A boy disobeys his father by firing a gun which he wasn't supposed to use till he was over. He later sees a cat with one eye missing and is riddled with guilt for months. The cat is starving so he and this elderly man he takes care of feed it and attempt to nurse it b
Angela Sunshine
I was surprised by this book. I really enjoyed it, and am impressed with the way Paula Fox portrayed the mind and thought process a boy of 11 has. Regret and secrets can eat you alive, and those emotions were captured perfectly.
The setting for this slim novel is a large, gray, falling down house overlooking the Hudson River, perhaps around Hudson or Poughkeepsie, though those cities are never mentioned. It's set in 1935 and the main character's father drives a Packard.

Ned’s Uncle Hilary gives him a Daisy rifle for his eleventh birthday. His father, a Congregational Church minister and his mother is an invalid who suffers greatly from rheumatoid arthritis. The rifle is put in the attic, but Ned gets it out and shoots at
I thought if I kept reading it would get better... I wish I hadn't kept reading
Catherine  Mustread
Jul 15, 2009 Catherine Mustread rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Grades 4+
Great book about suffering the consequences of one's actions.
Grace Wen
I was one of the few children who actually liked reading this book, and having recently revisited the novel, it still holds up. It has a slower, meditative pace with a lot of internal dialogue for the main character, Ned. Not much happens in terms of action, but even in elementary school, I appreciated how the author never patronized her readers with needless "adventuring", and wasn't afraid to present challenging mental and spiritual situations for younger readers. The pacing is not for everyon ...more
I read this book once when I was in elementary school, but all I remembered was the boy with the gun, and the cat. I was therefore surprised to find so much more depth to it than I recalled.
The tone was quiet and gray; it somewhat reminded me of "The Secret Garden" in that respect.While this story was small and introspective in scope, the beautiful writing and philosophical tones made it a satisfying and full literary feast.
It dealt with age and illness, guilt and how a child learns to see the
Jill Chomowicz
Perhaps Newberry worthy at the time, 1984, but disappointing relative to more recent picks. Higher standards now with many, many more authors of the 8-16 year old genre today??? Perhaps not a good year for literature??? (should look what else was published in 84)

boy learns how to lie, dad is a strict 'good' and he doesn't think he can live up to it, in the end his mother shares similar trouble. perhaps - Newberry because it portrays a child trying to be as good as perceived 'perfectly good' pare
This is the second book I’ve read by Paula Fox, the first was Slave Dancer. She is very good at writing characters. I swear I’ve met Mrs. Scallop before—she’s a close acquaintance!

“It was the time he’d been happy and hadn’t known it. When he was happy now, he would remind himself he was. He would say, At this moment I’m happy, and that was different from simply being a certain way and not having to give it a name.”

“Mrs. Scallop, thought Ned, would have been insulted by such a cake. She was insul
Set in rural New York, some time ago (the family car is a Packard), this is a story of a boy, 11 I think he is, facing a crisis. He receives an air gun as a BD present and his father thinks he is too young for it. The gun is stored in the attic but our boy, Ned, can't leave it alone. He sneaks it out one night and shoots at a shadow. Later, when a one-eyed cat shows up at his neighbor's house, he becomes sure that this is the shadow he shot at. He is filled with guilt and is sure that if anybody ...more
One-Eyed Cat is a quiet book with a strong silent roar. If Robert Frost and Andrew Wyeth got together to write a middle grade novel One-Eyed Cat would be it.
I chose One-Eyed Cat for the cover alone, that and it had a big silvery Newbery sticker slapped on the front. This book is slow as molasses on a winter day. (A good slow mind you.) It's moody and introspective world is filled with a whirlwind of characters who bump into and around guilt ridden Ned Wallis. The slow pacing gives the reader am
It has been awhile since I have read this book but I would like to try to recall what I remember and write this review as two different parts. I will re-read this, as I have picked this book up long ago when I was but a child. I am curious to compare both reviews--it is almost like introducing my child self to the adult that I have grown up to be.

Here it goes:

Review Part 1: A child's view

I was about 11 when I picked this book up. Honestly, I think I was attracted to the cover more than the title

Ned, the eleven-year-old son of a minister, receives a rifle as a gift from a relative, but is forbidden to use it. Although the gun is stored away in the attic, Ned can not resist the lure for closer inspection. His curiosity and the attraction for the forbidden take control of his will--with disastrous results.

If ciyrse it is inevitable that he fires off the gun (from the attic window), but he never considers that he will actually hit anything--he wa
Ann Marie
So after reading Dear Mr. Henshaw, I was very excited to select another book from the bookset of Newberry Medal winners...

I picked wrong... this book was boring.

Next time I am home, I am going to read Island of the Blue Dolphins. I may not remember that book, but I remember loving it.
I enjoyed The One-Eyed Cat by Paula Fox. I like how it shows how the rifle is tempting to Ned Wallis. He was told never to shoot it until he was older. One night, while his parents and maid were sleeping, Ned Wallis snuck up to the attic to retrieve the rifle. He shot blind outside in the dark not too sure what he hit. After he went in, he saw someone staring at him from the attic window. It was his mother. After seeing a strange cat with only one eye started to show up, his guilt stewed up insi ...more
I don't understand how this book earned a Newbery Medal. I found the characters to be rather dull and hard to relate to, and the overall tone seemed gloomy and drab. I know a lot of people like it, but it didn't appeal to me very much, and just didn't hold my interest.
Cheyla S.
I do not recommend this book to anyone. I thought if I kept reading the book would have a sudden exiting twist. All this book is about is a dying old man and an injured cat. The only reason I kept reading was because it was a class book.
Galen He
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Ned gets a gun from his uncle for his birthday, but his father takes it away, stating that he doesn't want him to have it yet. That night, Ned sneaks the gun out of the attic and shoots it at a shadow. He is sure that the one-eyed cat that turns up soon afterward is the result of his handywork, and he feels horribly guilty about it.

I recognize that there was good writing here, and I thought it had flashes of insight about human nature, but the plot was just a little to internal for me. The entir
Adele Wyn Eddy
I loved this classic story of childhood. A great book to read children 10 years all through adulthood. Tender and thought-provoking.
Story Revolution
Ned believes that, with a forbidden gun, he has shot out the eye of a wild cat, and his guilt poisons his life. An outstanding growing-up story for all ages about the painful secrets and the struggle to be good . . . This riveting story is spun with an eloquent simplicity that belies the skill of its telling . . . Adults and children alike will come effortlessly under the spell of this peerless storyteller . . .--Booklist, starred review. Newbery Honor book; ALA Notable Children's Book; ALA Best ...more
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Paula Fox is an American author of novels for adults and children and two memoirs. Her novel The Slave Dancer (1973) received the Newbery Medal in 1974; and in 1978, she was awarded the Hans Christian Andersen Medal. More recently, A Portrait of Ivan won the Deutscher Jugendliteraturpreis in 2008.

A teenage marriage produced a daughter, Linda, in 1944. However, given the tumultuous relationship wit
More about Paula Fox...
The Slave Dancer Desperate Characters Borrowed Finery: A Memoir Monkey Island The Widow's Children: A Novel

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