I Am Tama, Lucky Cat: A Japanese Legend by Wendy Henrichs

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Title: I Am Tama, Lucky Cat

SubTitle: A Japanese Legend

Publisher: Peachtree Publishers

Imprint: A children’s picture book from Peachtree Publishers

Pub Date: 08/01/2011

ISBN: 9781561455898

Another picture book I read today. 😀

Are you familiar with this cat figurine?

I bet you are. I have one at home. One of its hand moves forward and backward alternately. People call it the lucky cat. I didn’t  have any idea about the philosophy of this cat and why its hand moves that way. Why don’t they make dog figurine with the same hand movement?

It turns out there’s a legend behind this famous cat. This book tells us about the legend of Maneki Neko. Maneki means beckoning, Neko means cat. So, Maneki Neko is beckoning cat.

What’s the story about?

Many years ago, a cat went in search of food and shelter. Finally, she found an almost rundown temple and waited at its doorway with beckoning position. The monk, who lives in the temple, welcomed her happily. He gave her shelter and food and they kept each other company. Tama felt very lucky and she promised she will bring luck to the monk.

They lived in a poor life until one day Tama saved a warlord’s life from a falling cherry tree branch. The warlord was very thankful to Tama who had saved his life. Therefore, in thanksgiving, he repaired the temple and gave them plenty of food and made the temple as his family’s place of honor.

My opinion:

This is a picture book with lovely illustrations. The water-painting effect and soft colors give me a peaceful feeling. The author does not only write a story about a lucky cat, but she fills it with Japanese culture and Buddha’s teaching as well.

ARC is provided by Peachtree Publishers  via Netgalley.

View all my reviews

Note: My parents also believe that a three color cat brings luck. We have lots of them here.  Have you seen a three color cat before?


15 thoughts on “I Am Tama, Lucky Cat: A Japanese Legend by Wendy Henrichs

  1. I have that cat figurine at my home, well, I mean my grandma’s home.

    When I saw it for first time, I didn’t realize that it need a battery to make its hand move. I thought its move by using some kind of (what is “per” in english? Sring? CMIIW) or something like that. So, one day, when its hand didn’t move anymore, I asked my grandma about it. She said, “maybe the batttery has drop.” Walaaah, then I tried to look it, and yeah, there’s a battery in the buttom of that stupid cat. LoL.

    About a three color cat, yep, I have seen them, and even I still have one at my grandma’s home. But, sadly they all are female.
    A myth said that only a male three color cat which bring luck and fortune for us. Until now, I never see them.
    So why can’t we find them? Again, a myth said that their mother always eat them when their just born. She can differentiate her baby, which one has three color(male), and which one doesn’t.
    And then if you ask me why she eats her baby, I’m pretty sure I can’t answer it. Hehhehehe

  2. I have a three color cat at home, her name is Cannelle (Cinnamon) because she got one of her color who is just like cinnamon’s !
    I love her even if sometime she’s doing some stupid thing… Well she’s my lovely cat even then thought ! 🙂
    Did you know that you will find most of time female 3 colors’ cats ?! The few who will be male will not be fertile… Having 3 colors is an anomaly… for our great happiness !

  3. Oh, one more fact. A male three colors cat is a rare item. I just remember it now… every 3 colors cat I found back in the day was always in pregnancy. Lol. It means they are all female.

  4. Oh my! My daughter got one for a gift, she is now 17 and I have put it away due to many moves. I didn’t want to break it as it is made of a fragile material. I had to idea what the CAT was til now. I want the book too. I have to ck out your book reviews. Did you know you can blog for books for free, and they send you the books for free, then you review them on their site?! I just started it and I love it….Either way….Thanks for the info on this as I have a black cat of good luck and a tan one. The black cat was lonely and the girl owner was never home, and she would complain that when she got home after work this black cat she called DEE would not leave her alone! It drove her nuts…so when the boyfriend shared this, I said this poor cat needs attention and a play mate, so I offered to take it off their hands..and guess what? Dee is the best cat in the world. Right now He sits on my lap and purrs as I type this, which helps my errors in typing….in a good way. LOL….. Have a great day.

    • I got this one free from Netgalley. About free books, I guess they wouldn’t want to ship their book to Indonesia. Lol. It takes too much time and cost. So I’m very glad that I found Netgalley. They provide digital ARC. Have you joined Netgalley?

      Wow, Dee has found a lovely owner finally. She’s a lucky cat. And I hope she could bring some luck to you as well, just like Tama did to her master. Cats can be so sweet sometimes. 😀

  5. I just noticed you are on good reads, I am too, I am trying to make sure we are friends, I added The Twilight series: can you help me? I cannot get into the first book? How do I do that, keep reading that one? I love vampire books and everyone loves it and I have it and just cannot keep reading it as I do other books? Any ideas here? Please advise???? Jackie your fan,.

    • Oh yes. I’m on Goodreads.

      You can’t make yourself read Twilight? We’re cracking each other up this time. Lol. I’m laughing now.

      Dear Jackie, if you really can’t stand the book, just keep it in your bookshelf or donate it to someone else. There’s no use trying to enjoy it while you can’t. It’s wasting time. I experienced your problem once. I pushed myself to read the book to the point I wanted to puke afterward. I knew I can’t stand it, but I kept reading just because I can’t leave the book unfinished. Haahaha.. Lesson learned.

      By the way, there are a lot of vampire books out there that are better than Twilight. You can pick another book.

      I have to say that Twilight is not as good/bad as people say. It’s just so-so. Nothing special. Just ordinary storyline, with vampires and werewolf in it. I enjoyed it when the first time I read it, but I don’t feel the same now. Hahahhaha.

      Hey, while you’re still thinking whether to continue this Twilight thing or move to another book, I suggest you to read The Hunger Games trilogy. It’s awesome!!!

      Hope that helps, Jackie. 🙂

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