I recently picked up a copy of Homer's Odyssey: A Fearless Feline Tale, Or How I Learned About Love and Life with a Blind Wonder Cat, written by Gwen Cooper.
Homer was a tiny, abandoned black kitten when he was taken to a vet's office in 1997 with a life-threatening eye infection. The couple who brought him in wanted him to be put to sleep, but the young vet saw potential in the little fellow, and felt that he could still live a fulfilling life even without his sight.
No one wanted to adopt the special needs cat, until Gwen came along and fell in love at first sight (or first sniff, in Homer's case). From career and apartment changes, through experiencing 9/11 in NYC, to finding love, and eventually getting married, Homer was always by Gwen's side to provide motivation and inspiration.
The beginning of each chapter includes a passage from The Odyssey that corresponds to the theme of the section, and there are many examples that illustrate how Homer's irrepressible spirit inspired Gwen, and continually pushed her forward. Like Homer, Gwen learned that sometimes you have to take a risk when you don't know what's going to happen (Homer truly embodies the phrase, "blind leap of faith"), and just because something in life seems improbable, it doesn't mean that it's impossible. As Gwen explains in the video below, Homer "doesn't let uncertainty stop him" and "nobody can tell you what your potential is."
I found the book to be both moving and inspirational. Sometimes funny, sometimes dramatic, it showcases the love and true bond that a pet owner has with their animals, and how sometimes life's most unexpected surprises can be the sweetest.
Homer's Odyssey is available now in hardcover, and was just released in paperback today with a new cover, after word, and never before seen pictures. The best part is, 10% of all Gwen’s domestic royalties from the book will be donated to organizations that serve abused, abandoned, and disabled animals, including Blind Cat Rescue and Sanctuary, Inc. Be sure to get your paws on a copy today!