MEOW!!!! 2a.m. at the CATs PAJAMAS MEOW!!!!


I fell in love with the title, “2a.m. at the CAT’s PAJAMAS” (Crown) before I saw its cover and then when I did, I just flipped and had to get an advance copy! Look at it, that yummy turquoise and all those twinkling stars. DELISH, right?! Lucky me, I won a copy from shelf-awareness. This is one little gem you do not want to miss, my sweet peas! Author, Marie-Helene Bertino, who up until now has been known for winning the Iowa Short Fiction Award and editing/instructing ONE STORY is about to explode on the book scene.
Let me share something before we enter the utterly, uniquely, fantastical world of Miss Bertino. One of three main characters in the Kitty’s PJs is a nine-year old little girl, Madeleine Altimari who believes her calling in life is to be like her mother, a jazz singer “whose voice could redirect the mood of a room.” So like her late mother, she sings to Blossom Dearie albums every morning. I don’t know if you know, but Blossom is a real singer and my favorite. You should check out her CDs. A new compilation of all her work is being reissued on Verve in November. And now, back to the book.
So, it’s Christmas Eve’s Eve and if we know anything, we know anything can happen around Christmas – good or bad, it’s a magical time! Madeleine’s a little girl with a big dream to get on stage and God help anyone who gets in her way. Young Madeleine has just gotten expelled from her Catholic school for fighting again. Her dad continues to lie in bed at home, in depression since his wife died. Madeleine keeps an eye over her father, but her dream won’t be stopped.
Sarina Greene, is the school’s new third grade art teacher and recently divorced. She’s trying to get over her former husband and find a second chance on life. Sarina shows up at a Holiday potluck and feels out of place. She felt really badly when Madeleine got expelled and thought the Principal over-reacted.
And at the Cat’s Pajama’s, club owner, Jack Lorca is on the edge of losing his nightclub for fines totaling over $30-grand, but he’s not ready to give up until they drag him away kicking and screaming.
These three stories intertwine over the course of twenty-hours, with a full back-up cast of quirky characters that only add layers of richness to the heart and soul of Miss Bertino’s unique world we enter into while reading “2a.m. at the CATs PAJAMAS.” It’s a mystical, whimsical world where reading Bertino’s prose is getting caught up in Blossom Dearie’s beautiful scats during her early 60’s Paris years. I can dig that, babe! I loved that the characters are damaged and vulnerable. This novel may not be for everyone, but if you’re looking for something different, written well that delivers beyond expectations, I highly recommend “2a.m. at the CAT’s PAJAMAS.”
Thanks to Shelf-Awareness, TLC Tours and Reading

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