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Blitzcat Paperback – February 8, 2002


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Macmillan Children's Books (February 8, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 033039861X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0330398619
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 7.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #936,518 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Sensitive readers will realize at once that the story of Lord Gort is one of those tales that, once begun, demands to be finished. Black cats bring good luck, or so it is believed by the many people whose lives are changed by their encounters with the cat called Lord Gort. Lord Gort is an ordinary cat: she has no magic powers and rarely does anything more than what other cats can do. When her master leaves home to fight the Germans in World War II Lord Gort sets out to track him down. In the course of her travels the black cat is befriended by a lonely volunteer in the Observer Corps, a maverick sergeant, an elderly carter and a young war widow. Adopted by the rear gunner of a bomber plane, Lord Gort flies on numerous missions over enemy territory. After many successful flights, the intrepid feline's luck runs out; she and the rear gunner are forced to bail out over occupied France. With the help of the Spanish and French resistance movements the man and the cat return to England, where Lord Gort is reunited with her master. Each of these glimpses of men and women in wartime is as perfect as a pearl; Lord Gort's journey is the single black thread on which the precious beads are strung. Ages 12-up.
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

"Westall's writing has always been strong and vivid but he has rarely written as confidently as this." Times Literary Supplement

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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See all 16 customer reviews
This is a very good piece of writing, rich in historical detail.
Sir Furboy
Of course, it is a MUST for "Cat lovers", but for anyone else who enjoys a wonderful heart lifting story.
"addicted2ebay"
It tells the story of a lost cat traveling through England during the Blitz.
A. Cosenzo

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Gwen A Orel on December 29, 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
First, Westall captures cats better than any writer of fiction around. Without descending to silly anthropomorphism, he presents the behavior and perspective of the cat with just enough distance so that anyone who knows cats will recognize the authenticity at once. Lord Gort is a clever, finicky creature who runs away to find her person rather than be stuck with her person's wife and baby during the war. "Psi trailing"-- where animals can find their way to their owners, even when they've never been to the place where the owner has moved-- is a documented phenomenon, and scientists still don't really understand it.
Second, Lord Gort's travels give Westall an incredible opportunity to present different episodes in the lives of ordinary English people during the way. So we spend time at a train depot, where Lord Gort is hailed as good luck by hollow-eyed returning soldiers. She lives for awhile with a Scottish captain whose division is requisitioning a small town, and we see through her proximity a wary but tender relationship develop between the lady of the house, whose officer husband is in Egypt, and the captain. I was surprised at such a clear depiction of sexual tension and complex emotions in a YA novel, but it's handled subtly and seriously. Lord Gort is also present at the bombing of Coventry, which many Americans may not really know about-- I didn't. I knew Londoners were evacuated during the war, but had not realized the extent of the devastation-- a whole town of displaced people on the brink of starvation.
There's also a wonderful story, complete in itself, about a young war widow on the brink of a life-killing depression, who is jolted by Lord Gort, somewhat against her will, back into life. Her story brought me to tears.
This book is a very quick read-- I stayed up all night to finish it-- but it has a lot of information in it. A great book to teach, perhaps at the middle school level, and an enjoyable read for pleasure.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Ann Van Den Bergh on November 17, 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I read this book in my 5th grade class when I was a little girl. It tells the story of a forlorn black cat looking for his owner who has gone to fight in the war. This book began my love affair with WWII and enthralled me so that I can't wait to read it with the children I teach.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 12, 1998
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This feline odyssey is set in war-ravaged England starting after the evecuation of Dunkirk and continues for a year afterwards, Blitzcat is an extraordinary adventure story of heroism and stoicism, of compassion and brutality. Lord Gort is a female black cat (considerd lucky by servicemen) who travels around England seeking her beloved soldier master. (psi-trailing)
This plucky heroine will tug at your heart as World War II causes her to lose several of her legendary-allotted nine lives--with modesty and little fuss. She accepts all manner of major disasters and minor set- backs calmly, inspiring the various humans whose lives she shares to break the barriers of the limited existence. The touch of this gentle black cat changes lives for the better, by putting her temporary owners in touch with their inner selves--making them more human and caring.
Her peregrinations take her to Dover's mined beaches and Coventry's bombed old town; she endures war first hand by an open UXB pit and aboard a bomber. She endures sensory deprivation and travels internationally, always searching one or the other of her soldier masters. She keeps faith with her kittens and paradoxically the dream of her first hearth. Lord Gort is enchanting--capable of bringing out the best in her people, and helping them in their own physical and moral survival. An insightful tale which will educate and charm the reader.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 25, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This book mixes compassion and adventure in a winning and thoroughly interesting manner. It was simply a pleasure to read! I loved the cat as well as the way she brightened other's lives. A truly touching story for all ages.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By JFM Portland on May 21, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Robert Westall tells the story of a cat trying to find her home and her people amid the chaos of war. It is a story that could easily be a mawkish fantasy. Instead it is utterly credible throughout. Westall gives us characters both feline and human that are completely realistic. He writes about the period with the authority of someone who lived through it.

At $5.00 a very good value for anyone who loves cats or just enjoys a well told story.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Sir Furboy on September 21, 2011
Format: Paperback
Lord Gort is a cat. Separated from her person, she sets out to find him and in the process meets a number of different people on different situations. Against this backdrop we have a set of short stories, all connected by the cat, and all revealing so much about war time Britain. Westall has researched the events well and describes actual war time events, such as the bombing of Coventry, to create a novel that transports the reader into a bygone era. This is a very good piece of writing, rich in historical detail.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Meneatariel on March 23, 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
There is only one word to describe this book...interesting. The author's tyle is very unique. He desplays the main character, a black cat named Lord Gort, differently than most writters of children's books would have. Unlike most animal fiction novels, you cannot read every exact thought running through the cat's mind and you tend to connect more to the human characters in the book. It is definately a weird book. It's written like a child's book: easy to read, short words, ect., but there is sex and violence in it. Also, the cat abandons her young, again unlike most children's books. This is really the type of book you'd have to read to understand. It's incredably unique. I personally think the author tried too hard to mix in the violence of the war, the passion of two lovers, the pain of a lost loved one and the nature of the feline species. I incourage you to read the book before giving it to a daughter or grandson or whatever.
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