“Sadly overlooked in published folklore are encounters with the ghosts of past family members of the four-legged variety,” Russell says. “But visits from departed pets are easily the most common ghost experiences I hear when people share their real-life encounters with me. And cats refuse to be left out of most anything.”
During his travels across the South, Russell has heard it all—cats that can sit in women’s laps and detect that they’re pregnant, cats that can sense the earliest hints of sickness on your breath, and cats that can tell you’re hungry five minutes before you realize it yourself. Some ghostly cats are devoted enough to help bereaved parents deal with loss. Others are vicious enough to return in the afterlife to take vengeance on cat-killing lawyers and philanderers. Included in the 22 tales in GHOST CATS OF THE SOUTH are the following:
• A cat smelling of chicken soup that saves a pair of street musicians in Kentucky
• A hungry Mississippi cat that inhabits the seats of a vintage 1956 Chevy Bel Air
• A piano-playing cat that fulfills the Thanksgiving wish of a Georgia grocery-store magnate
• A soot-covered Louisiana cat whose fiery mission is to enforce a no-smoking ban
• A Virginia cat that must get its owner his glasses before his coffin is sealed
These ghost stories canvas cities across the southern United States, including:
• Birmingham, Alabama;
• Tuscaloosa, Alabama;
• St. Augustine, Florida;
• Atlanta, Georgia;
• Decatur County, Georgia;
• Savannah, Georgia;
• Nonesuch, Kentucky;
• Alexandria, Louisiana;
• Baton Rouge, Louisiana,
• Jackson, Mississippi;
• Tunica, Mississippi;
• Black Mountain, North Carolina;
• Hot Springs, North Carolina;
• Sylva, North Carolina;
• Charleston, South Carolina;
• Columbia, South Carolina;
• Edgefield, South Carolina;
• Myrtle Beach, South Carolina;
• Gatlinburg, Tennessee;
• Nashville, Tennessee;
• Williamsburg, Virginia; and
• Mount Rogers, Virginia.
With so many ghostly feline tales, GHOST CATS OF THE SOUTH reveals that a cat's beloved complexity continues well beyond the grave.
For a free review copy to media and booksellers or to schedule an interview with the author, contact Brooke Csuka at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Randy Russell is the Edgar-nominated author of five published novels for adults and two books of short stories. He and his wife, Janet Barnett, coauthored two volumes of southern Appalachian folklore and the highly popular GHOST DOGS OF THE SOUTH. Russell's first young-adult novel, DEAD RULES, was published by HarperTeen in June 2011. Russell presents ghost-lore programs to groups large and small across the South. He and his wife live outside Asheville, North Carolina. For more information on the author, go to www.ghostfolk.com.
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John F. Blair, Publisher, is an independent, family-owned company that publishes book on the southeastern United States and is based in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Learn more at www.blairpub.com.