“A Street Cat Named Bob” Has Arrived In America

Scarf cat aka A Street Cat named Bob!
Scarf cat aka A Street Cat named Bob! (Photo credit: Moff)

“A Street Cat Named Bob” has arrived in America

It’s true, just last week on July 30th, bookstores in the United States stocked the shelves with the bestselling book “A Street Cat Named Bob.”  You should know “A Street Cat Named Bob” was published in March 2012 and was on the United Kingdom’s The Sunday Times bestseller list for a year. It has been published in at least 28 languages and over 800,000 copies have been sold.

So why are we writing today about “A Street Cat Named Bob?”

Without exception whenever we publish a post about a book, it is always related in some way about the subject of addiction and recovery.  And “A Street Cat Named Bob” also tells the true story about a recovering heroin addict, James Bowen, who meets a stray cat. The year was 2007 and as Mr. Bowen says in the opening pages of his first book:

“Besides, the last thing I needed right now was the extra responsibility of a cat. I was a failed musician and a recovering drug addict living a hand-to-mouth existence in sheltered accommodation. Taking responsibility for myself was hard enough.”

A bit about James Bowen…

James is known as a “busker.” If you are not familiar with that term, it is chiefly a British term that refers to a person who makes their living by entertaining on the street or a public place. The entertainment can be dancing, singing or reciting. Mr. Bowen plays the guitar and sings. According to a USA Today article:

Bowen is a Londoner by way of the English county of Surrey and the nation of Australia. He is 34, has shoulder-length brown hair and, for many years, harbored, as he puts it in the book, “dreams of becoming the next Kurt Cobain.”

Instead, he spent close to a decade battling homelessness and heroin addiction.

“When you are addicted to heroin, you wake up sick with sweats, and your legs are kicking, and you are concentrating on getting the next fix — that’s all,” Bowen says.

So what is it about Bob?

Since publishing his first book, “A Street Cat Named Bob,” James Bowen has been interviewed by most major news outlets.  You will see from the related articles listed below it seems that everyone likes something about this feel good story. A number of these articles include interesting video interviews with Mr. Bowen. We hope you will watch them. In the meantime…we would like to share a news video from CBS News video from March 12, 2012.  We think it concisely tells how James and Bob met and how the book “A Street Cat Named Bob,” was conceived.

If you are having trouble viewing the video, you can see it here.

The miracle of recovery and finding a passion

For over 25 years Cottonwood Tucson has worked with those suffering from the disease of addiction, as well as those who have mental health issues including mood disorders and anxiety disorders. A number of years ago we opened a satellite office in London. Our London staff offers assessment and referral services, and provides aftercare referrals along with an aftercare group each Tuesday evening.

When working with our patients we share the miracle of recovery and always talk about how recovery and sobriety are often accompanied with finding a passion. In learning about James Bowen and his life with Bob, it occurred to us that Mr. Bowen has found his passion.

You might be interested to know the following extras about James and Bob:

  • There is a FACEBOOK page for “A Street Cat Named Bob”
  • Bob and James are active in charity work and have a JustGiving™ page called James & Bob’s Blue Cross Page.
  • On February 14, 2013, Mr. Bowen published “BOB No Ordinary Cat.” This version of the story was written specifically for children ages 11 and above.
  • Bob and James have their own blog!
  • And, yes, you can follow them on Twitter.

So, why not add one more title to your summer reading list?

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