Windrusher and the Trail of Fire
By Victor DiGenti
Novels about us kitties seem to fall into two categories: they either ignore humans for the most part, or the author makes them look very foolish. But most of you cats reading this know that humans aren’t total idiots (although sometimes their odd behavior makes you wonder), and they certainly do play a big part in our lives, even if the world doesn’t exactly revolve around them. So it’s nice to read books like Victor DiGenti’s Windrusher series, in which the humans are drawn nearly as 3-dimensionally as the cats are. Yes, there are heroic humans and villainous ones, and the lines are firmly drawn, but these characters are almost like the humans you encounter in your daily life.
If you are not familiar with Windrusher (I wasn’t before this book), he is a cat who visits with ancient feline ancestors and gods in his dreams, and like most of us, has a psychic connection with other cats and with his humans. Known as “Tony” to his biped family, Windrusher encounters adventure and overcomes danger in each book with the help of the cats in his dreams. Trail of Fire finds him separated from his humans once again, and taken to a Florida cat sanctuary owned by a kindly young woman who is battling against an evil land developer who is out to take her property away. While Windrusher knows he could just leave and find his humans with little problem, a cat goddess tells him that he must stay at the sanctuary — otherwise the dozens of cats living there will meet a “fiery death.” Meanwhile, his family, not fully aware of the danger he is in, is desperately hunting for him.
What I found most interesting about this book is that it spends quite a lot of time dwelling on what is going on with the humans — and I was actually interested! I can’t count the times I’ve read cat novels and skipped over the parts about the humans, but this one had me all the way through. DiGenti really captures the interplay between cats and humans (and cats and cats) and sucks you right in. The cat guardians in this book will ring true, if you’ve ever had a close human companion in your life. From what I gather, this third book in the Windrusher series is supposedly the last, but I really hope not. I’m sure there are a lot more adventures out there for Windrusher and his friends.