Book Review: “Dewey: The Small-Town Library Cat Who Touched the World” by Vicki Myron and Bret Witter

This book is as much about Dewey the cat as about Vicki Myron, the author’s life and family. Indeed, Dewey is a very smart cat that came with a very interesting survival story (being abandoned in a dropbox of a public library in Spencer, Iowa under a cold, blizzard condition). It helped that Dewey had an outgoing and friendly personality and knew how to read the body languages of people and took appropriate actions to gain the love and trust of people in a small town, and then eventually the world when he became famous. Of course, the author’s own life story (married to an alcoholic husband and battled many illnesses including breast cancer) is just as interesting as Dewey and draws parallelism to that of Dewey.

From the book, I came to understand a little about the typical Iowa people and their life, history, and personality. Like the corn crops they grow, the Iowa people are down to earth and take the tough life as they are. The author’s life and her mental toughness battling the tragedies (death of her two brothers, and mother) of her family and herself serves as a good example. Libraries may not seem to be a desirable community hangout place for the people, but Dewey’s presence makes the differences. People were coming to the library to read and learn and check up their favorite cat, Dewey.

This is a good book to read if you’re down on your luck and feel pity for yourself. Dewey teaches us to be significant in a small way that makes a big difference – just to be there and be a good comforter and listener. The author and many people in Spencer, Iowa and the world have been changed because of Dewey, so will many readers.