Those attending Lady Blemley’s dinner party are astounded when one of the guests claims to have taught the family cat, Tobermory, to speak. This wonder soon turns to embarrassment when the cat reveals all the gossip he has overheard around the house.
4. The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov
A talking cat the size of a pig that walks on its hind legs, drinks vodka and hangs around with Satan causes havoc on the streets of Moscow. Bulgakov’s Behemoth is one of the most deliciously evil cats in fiction.
5. The Cat in the Hat by Dr Seuss
Not evil, but certainly mischievous, is Dr Seuss’ Cat in the Hat, who has entertained generations with his attempts to distract two small children from an otherwise boring day while their mother is out.
Literary Cats by Judith Robinson and Scott Pack is out on September 30 (Bodleian Library, £16.99). You can buy it from The Big Issue shop on Bookshop.org, which helps to support The Big Issue and independent bookshops.
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