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The Cat in the Cradle (Loka Legends #1)

3.83  ·  Rating details ·  705 Ratings  ·  75 Reviews
Dueling with mad magicians, battling possessed beasts, and surviving endless hostile landscapes? Easy. Loving someone you weren't supposed to? That was hard. A faceless killer terrorizes the five lands, extinguishing from great distances the lives of even the most powerful men. It is from this murderer that Dylan is forced to flee. Only Tyjinn, a brash and unpredictable bo ...more
Paperback, 1st Edition, 257 pages
Published March 24th 2010 by Swimming Kangaroo Books (first published March 23rd 2010)
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5 very, very solid stars. I predict that by the end of 2010 this book will have many YA Literary, GLBT YA Literary and GLBT Literary Awards mentioned on the cover of it’s future editions and on it’s website.

The Cat in the Cradle is a thrilling adventure filled with suspense, likable characters, a consistent imaginative world and plenty of twists and turns. Wrapped in all of this is a coming out story written with such heart that people from all walks of life will appreciate it.

The three main cha
Apr 14, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: To fantasy lovers, and those looking for a magical wonderful read!


The Cat in the Cradle is a wonderful tale about friendship, beautiful magic, and the momentous feeling that is love. This is a wonderful magical read, filled with imaginative creatures and a deeply woven plot. The world created is just spellbinding, and the illustrations provide an eye-catching look worthy of its chapter. I was just blown away and all types of impressed with this book, it is a story not to be missed.

We meet Dylan the main narrator, he is bored with his ov
Apr 14, 2010 rated it it was amazing
4.5 stars

Maybe it’s just me but I had the Harry Chaplin song “Cat’s in the Cradle” in my head EVERY single time I picked up this book. While the title is fitting to the book, it also evoked a catchy song that drove me insane when it wouldn’t leave my head. Despite the whole “little boy blue and the man on the moon” mental repetition, The Cat in the Cradle is an utterly delightful, whimsical fantasy filled with a creative imaginative plot, great characters, solid writing, and eye catching art wor
Jul 10, 2011 rated it really liked it
Just Finished the Cat in the Cradle.

Having read Something Like Summer only a few days ago, I decided to read this book and now this author has rocketed to my number 1 slot for fiction writers.

The breadth of Bells capabilities as a writer is astonishing, The Cat in the Cradle proves beyond a doubt that he is as accomplished a Fantasy novelist as he is a Romance writer. The world you are thrown into from the first few pages was at times bizarre and at others preposterous, but in an ingenious way a
Aug 23, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: series, fantasy, romance, m-m, ya
The story follows Dylan, who is the son of the blue Oligarch. Each Oligarch owns a Loki, a special stone which grants a particular power. Dylan's father controls water with his. Dylan decides to go on an adventure which goes badly wrong when he witnesses the death of another Oligarch, this leads the Dylan, along with his talking cat, on an adventure to prevent more deaths. Along the way he meets Tyjinn, another young man who Dylan finds very attractive.

I pretty much loved this book which combin
Jan 25, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: gay, fantasy
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 27, 2010 rated it really liked it
Really enjoyable YA fantasy. Bell is a great writer--I wouldn't qualify his style as "simple," but uncluttered and unburdened, easy to read and imagine, nice flow. He's very adept at creating believable, balanced characters, and writes both younger and older voices well. (You know sometimes when an adult writer writes from a child or teen perspective and it totally doesn't sound real? Bell doesn't have that problem.)

There are some nice romantic elements included as well. I think for teens, espec
Nikyta *Miss Forgetful*
I loved this book. The world building, to me, was incredibly complex while still easy to follow and instead of making this a really long review, I suggest you read Kassa's review. She did a great job on trying to explain what the world was like.

Besides the fact that I loved the fantasy aspect of the book, I really liked the plot and the characters. While the world was complex, the plot was easy to follow which made it all the more enjoyable. I liked the fact that the world was built around color
3.75 stars.

This novel features well-written, engaging characters, includes a (mostly) compelling hero's quest, and offers a dash of sweet romance on the side. It was a lot of fun!

The Five Lands, which are the setting here, are ruled by powerful magicians -- the Oligarchs -- and all of them possess a uniquely-colored stone called a loka, which serves as the repository for a vast set of powers. Possessing multiple stones would allow the owner to rule over the entire nation. The action in the story
Jun 26, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, romance, gay, ebook, 2012, ya
4.5 stars. Very good young adult gay fantasy (with romantic elements) about a young man and his talking cat who head out to experience more of life than what they've seen during their sheltered existence. They achieve that in spades.
Feb 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I was fooled by it‘s title first. But I am glad I gave it a go. It’s a really good fantasy book with a gay main character and a sweet lovestory. But it is more than that it is a great story about magic, friendship, love, decisions and sacrifice...

I really like the plot and the characters. The world the auther created is great and the magic and it‘s use is innovative. I really want to explore more of it!
May 17, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: queer, fantasy
Stars: 4.5/5

I've had this book on my to-read list for a long time, and I kept promising myself that it would be next. But I kept putting it off because I'd heard such good things and I hate when my fantasies (no pun intended) are dashed. At one point I started it, but was distracted by a sexier, faster moving book. I didn't know what to expect from this book going in, but I was pleasantly surprised by what I found there. Although the writing isn't amazing, it isn't distracting from the st
4,5 stars!
It was a young adult book and it had the feel of it or maybe I've just grown up to much to fully appreciate it.
Which is not to say that the book is not for mature reader! Also I have to admit I liked the pictures inside the book, which you never find in the ones for grown up.
The style of the book did remind me of Pierce Anthony, so reading it was a bit like a trip back in my childhood, reading again of fantasy and adventure with caracters who still believe everything is possible and th
Lexi Ander
Mar 03, 2011 rated it really liked it
This is a well written and vibrant young adult adventure. Though at times it was at time a little wordy which caused it to drag here and there but that didn't take away from my involvement in the story. I loved Ty who at times was more mature than Dylan even though he wasn't much older. Dylan was a typical teenager with a mouth to match. Overall, the world was unique and enjoyable. I had totally guessed the wrong person for the villain, who was really well done. I look forward to reading more by ...more
Bert Edens
Jun 09, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads
Won this in a First Reads giveaway.

I finally got a chance to sit down and read this when I left my other book at work over the weekend. :)

I really enjoyed this wonderful, magical story. Like another reviewer, the world that Bell created reminded my of Xanth at first glance, but there's enough difference to make it unique to this story.

I wouldn't mind seeing more books to follow this one. This was a great coming of age story, but the world is rich enough, there could easily be follow-ups.
Anyta Sunday
Jul 12, 2014 rated it liked it

This was weird. Good weird, but yeah . . . I loved the ideas and imagination in this, I just wish there'd been more tension. It all happened in such a whirlwind without giving me time to process and feel the emotions.

Still, the writing was fluid and I enjoyed the read.
Seregil of Rhiminee
Jun 16, 2012 rated it really liked it
The Cat in the Cradle was a very pleasant surprise for me and I enjoyed reading it. It's a charming and easily likeable fantasy book, which handles difficult subjects in a sensitive and engaging way.

The Cat in the Cradle is a story about a young man called Dylan. He's the son of the Blue Oligarch and lives in the Lakelands. Dylan decides to travel away for a few days, because he's a bit bored with his life (he decides to visit his friend, Rano, who's the son of the Yellow Oligarch). When Dylan w
Sep 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
I would have loved to have this book as a kid. It's exactly the sort of quirky fantasy romp I always enjoyed, but also representing queerness. I think reading it as an adult I didn't get quite as much enjoyment out if it as I would have as a kid, because it does suffer from a little bit of the flatness and lack of coherence that those sorts of stories I enjoyed always suffered from, but it was quite enjoyable nonetheless.
Nov 24, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy, gay-fiction
An early work from Jay Bell, The Cat in the Cradle augurs his success as an author. Like his subsequent works, it is character driven, is about G-rated, male-male relationships, and has an engaging story. I do notice Jay's growth as a novelist, even compared to the 2nd book in this series. The Cat in the Cradle does not have the smooth flow of prose that his later novels are known for. Still it is an easy read and is recommended for Gay Fantasy lovers.

7 of 10 stars
Jessica James
May 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
Mar 22, 2017 rated it liked it
I liked the story a lot though it moved like molasses more often than not. The descriptions were beautiful, and the world and magic, exciting!
Feb 06, 2014 rated it really liked it
I'm no stranger to Sci-fi and Fantasy but even I thought a few times that there was a lot to remember to this world that Jay Bell created. At times there are elements of the real world which kept this book grounded but then you've got things like talking cats (which are apparently rare), half human half elementals, and floating islands in clouds. This was certainly different from Jay Bell's other books but it was nice I thought & considerably lighter than his others too. The overall plot did ...more
May 07, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 5-star-2016, lgbtqia
This book has a really interesting magic system. Ten different kinds of magic recognized by color. All with two components. I was very happy that we were able to find out what each color did and meet the oligarchs that control the colors to get a sense of all the magic in this world by the end.Of course, we definitely don't see all that they can do, though.I'm sure we will see more of it actively in the second book. I really loved how different and eccentric the Oligarchs were. It makes me wonde ...more
Mar 03, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: ya
Nice romance, perfect for teenagers or anyone who finds difficult (due to social pressures) to accept who they are.
Lena Grey
Jan 18, 2011 rated it really liked it
Lions, and tigers, and bears, oh my! a Chimera, a werewolf, and a Pegasus too. These were but a few a few of the creatures encountered by Dylan, the main character of 'The Cat in the Cradle' by Jay Bell on his fantastical quest to restore order to his world.

Jay Bell did a good job of presenting Dylan's progress from a spoiled older boy to that of a competent young man. With each achievement Dylan grew in stature, gradually became more responsible and decisive. An important development in Dylan's
Jun 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-male-male
I absolutely loved this book. When I first started it, I thought I would never finish. It just didn't work for me, but after the first couple of chapters, things changed and I was sucked it.

I would categorize this as an adventure saga more than a romance. Yes, there is a little bit of romance, but the adventure is what makes up the story and why I loved the book.

The story takes place on a world that is ruled by 10 Oligarchs. Oligarchs are individuals with power and magic and their power is nota
Aug 02, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: gay, gay-fantasy
There are some children classics that possess the undefinable but very real quality of speaking both to children and adults who will find in them a depth that involves them emotionally. This is not one of those wonderful books but, all in all, I liked it and enjoyed reading it or, at least, the kid in me enjoyed it thoroughly. I may agree with a critical reviewer on some points but not in his/her dismissing the novel as nearly worthless.

What the author was aiming at is not clear: the setting is
Gabi Garcia
Aug 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I'm felling really stupid for not have read this one before! But well now I finally did and I'm trilled, amazed and in love with the Loka series and cant wait to read the next one!

Jay Bell is one of my favorite authors and in this book once more he shows me why! I cant believe how into this magical worlds of the five lands I got myself. It's like I thought Jay would stay with just the Blue Loka and red, but suddenly you're dragged around the the lands to meet all Oligarch and all of them are inc
Oct 26, 2010 rated it liked it
This was a good book. I enjoyed myself reading it, enough that I finished it in one day. The story was cute and engaging enough to hold my interest. There were a few problems I had with it, though, first and most importantly it's need to have been proofread one last time before publishing. It is riddled with grammatical and typographical errors, and that's just unfortunate. Second, the title has very little at all to do with the book, and only served to constantly get that annoying song stuck in ...more
Mar 07, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: own-ebook, fantasy
2.5 stars

I don't have much to say about this book other than that I was extremely disappointed by it. It made for a quick and simple read, which is not always bad, but in this case it was because it could have been so much more!

The concept of lokas was fascinating to me and kept me reading, but the story itself seemed simplified. I had a hard time making myself continue at some points and I really only finished the book because I wanted to see how the author would end it. I was disappointed with
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Jay Bell never gave much thought to Germany until he met a handsome foreign exchange student. At that moment, beer and pretzels became the most important thing in the world. After moving to Germany and getting married, Jay found himself desperate to communicate the feelings of alienation, adventure, and love that surrounded this decision, and has been putting pen to paper ever since.
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