Our Readers’ Favorite Bookstore Cats (Volume Two)

It doesn't take of lot of hard work for a cat to become famous: 1. get a job at a place where people gather, 2. have someone upload your photo to the internet, and 3. eventually, someone will request that you be featured at mental_floss! Here are more of our reader's favorite bookstore cats.

1. Raffles

Beers Books in Sacramento is named after Mrs. Nellie Beer, in case you were wondering. Their 13-year-old store cat Raffles was adopted from a shelter in 2002 and is referred to as "the world's best bookstore cat". She hosts the Beers Books Facebook page, where she has many fans. Raffles was named one of Sacramento's "Essential Midtown Characters", the only non-human to make the list. Image by Flickr user Kent Kanouse.

2. Mr. Eko

Dark Star Books (and comics) in Yellow Springs, Ohio is a store that loves cats. Their mascot Bart lived at the shop for nearly twenty years and is memorialized at the site. The current store cat was named Mr. Eko after a character from the TV show Lost. He has quite a presence on the store's Facebook page, especially in the photos. As you can see, Mr. Eko figures prominently in Dark Star's promotional materials.

3. Ember

Comic Relief is a comic book supermarket in Berkeley, California. Two cats, Ember and Ash, have the run of the place and have made fans of the customers. There are a lot of pictures of the very photogenic Amber (shown here), and you can see one of Ash at Facebook.

4. Smokey

Hyde Brothers in Ft. Wayne, Indiana employs a cat named Smokey. His biography is short and to the point:

In the spring of 2008, on his way to work, Sam saw a cat walking down the street. He thought, "Now that's a bookstore cat." An hour later, Smokey strolled in the back door of the store. He so obviously belonged, we didn't even make him fill out an application. A buddy to all he meets, he enjoys all of the attention he receives from customers.

Smokey's predecessor, Katy, who once appeared in an award-winning short film, is memorialized at the store's website.

5. El Marko

Twice Sold Tales in Seattle has some real gems in their website, like the admonition against abusing books. However, the site doesn't say anything about the many cats who live at both locations. Flickr user Mike Baehr took a picture of El Marko, who lives at the Capitol Hill store and whose picture graces the store's t-shirts. See more of the store's cats at Flickr.

6. Eve

Despite the name, Dog Ear Books in Athens, Georgia has a store cat named Eve, shown here during the grand opening of the store's new location. You can also see her peeping up from a comfy chair in the book club room.

7. Caspar

Bookworm in Carbondale, Illinois is home to Caspar, whose hobbies are napping and shedding, but he also loves to be petted by customers. Caspar has his own photo album on the store's Facebook page.

8. Gwenievere

Already Read Used Books in Alexandria, Virginia is proud of their hardworking employee Gwenievere the Biblio Cat. She is part Maine Coon cat, part Siamese, part Manx, and part alley cat. Gwen loves bookstore customers, but passes instant judgment on vendors and solicitors.

9. Mr. Dolly and 10. Che

When Dolly’s Bookstore was founded in Park City, Utah, it was named after a human named Dolly. However, it has become a tradition to keep at least one store cat named Dolly. There have been three cat Dollys, including two named Mr. Dolly just to keep the cats' identities clear. The current Mr. Dolly is a tuxedo cat that shares shop duties with a large Main Coon named Che.

If your favorite bookstore cat isn't listed here, it may be found in one of the previous posts, 12 Bookstore Cats, 8 Bookstore Cats, or Our Readers’ Favorite Bookstore Cats (Volume One). Or it may be in the next edition of the Bookstore Cat series!

The Edisto Bookstore
13 Bookstore Cats
The Edisto Bookstore
The Edisto Bookstore

Curling up with a good book and a cat is a heavenly experience. Libraries and bookstores know that, and having a cat around is not only good for customers relations and advertising, they also keep mice away. And they make the folks who work there happy. Over the years, we’ve brought you several lists of bookstores and their resident cats. Here are a baker's dozen more of them for your enjoyment.

1. Amelia

The Spiral Bookcase via Facebook

The Spiral Bookcase in Philadelphia got a new cat in 2012. The kitten was named Amelia, after both Amelia (Amy) Pond and Amelia Bedelia. She was alone on the street, and believed to have been dumped. The store describes her as “adorable, affectionate, and mouthy, and we can’t let her go.”

2., and 3. Noodle and Freddie

Weiser Antiquarian Books via Facebook

Weiser Antiquarian Books in York Beach, Maine, is the oldest occult bookstore in the United States. As such, the store is almost obligated to have cats. Those would be Noodle and Freddie, who are both male and brothers. Freddie is pictured here.

4., and 5. Pierre and Upton Sinclair

The Kelmscott Bookshop via Facebook

The Kelmscott Bookshop in Baltimore lists Pierre and Upton Sinclair on their staff page as security (Pierre) and apprentice security (Upton Sinclair). The older Pierre is the white cat. Both were strays taken in by store employees to lounge among the books and greet customers. Pierre’s hobbies include “eating, tripping customers, stealing pencils, and learning French.” They also note he’s not the smartest cat.

6., and 7. Tony and Mabel Dodge Lujan

Photo via Yelp

Moby Dickens Bookshop in Taos, New Mexico has always included a cat or two on their staff. The current residents are Tony and Mabel Dodge Lujan. They were no doubt named after Taos art patron Mabel Dodge Luhan and her fourth husband Tony. Customers love the cats.

8. Emily Grace

The Edisto Bookstore via Facebook

Emily Grace lives ands works at The Edisto Bookstore on Edisto Island, South Carolina. She was a stray taken in front he parking lot. Emily Grace takes her responsibilities at the store seriously, but only works for about an hour a day. Then she has to take a nap. Visiting authors get their photographs taken with the usually-asleep Emily Grace, which you can see on their Facebook timeline.

9. Sterling

Abraxas Books via Tumblr

At a store in Daytona Beach, Florida, named Abraxas Books you’ll find a cat named Sterling overseeing operations. See an earlier picture of him at Facebook, and another as a kitten when he first came to the bookstore.

10., and 11. Mr. Blue and Mr. Gray

The Bookman at Facebook

The Bookman bookstore in Colorado Springs, Colorado, has two resident cats named Mr. Blue and Mr. Gray (sometimes spelled Grey). Mr. Gray is the darker of the two, and every Facebook post carries his profile picture.

12., and 13. GwenieB and SweetiePie

Already Read Used Books at Facebook

We mentioned Already Read Used Books in Alexandria, Virginia in a post several years ago featuring their cat Gwenievere the Bibliocat. Gwenievere passed away shortly after that was published. Now the store has two Bibliocats, GwenieB (apparently named in honor of her predecessor) and SweetPie. GwenieB is on the left. There are stories about the cats at Facebook, like the one in which they guarded the store against dogs.

10 Excellent Bookstore Cats

Not all bookstores have cats: the big chains don't have cats, and some mom and pop stores keep their cats at home, so if you are allergic to cats, you can still find a place to browse for reading material. But you'll find resident cats in many independent bookstores because they are nice to curl up with (just like a good book), they don't eat the merchandise, and they protect the premises from rodents who will eat the merchandise. Let's be honest, though - this list has more than ten cats. What it is is a list of ten bookstores that have cats.

1. Ralph

Mudsock Books & Curiosity Shoppe in Fishers, Indiana sells books, games, and children's toys. The resident cat Ralph is another draw, as he has quite a few fans. And he doesn't mind posing for a picture. Photograph by Flickr user Phil Jern.

2. Mojo, Molly, and Cupcake

Awesome Books in Pittsburgh has several cats. Pictured here are Cupcake Slim and Mojo. Mojo is the ginger cat; I know because there are other pictures of Mojo with his lion haircut. The third store cat is named Molly.

3. Parit

Pegasus Books in Berkeley, California, is proud of all the pets that belong to their staff, but Parit lives at the downtown store. This photograph was taken by an avid Parit fan who is also a blogger.

4. Sam and Trouble

The Other Change of Hobbit is a science fiction and fantasy bookstore in Berkeley. They have two cats, Sam and Trouble. Sam is the more outgoing of the two, and will jump on the shoulders of customers if given a chance.

5. Ginger

Orinda Books in Orinda, California features their bookstore cat right on the website's home page. They welcome you to come in and pet Ginger, who is accustomed to customers. Here you see her drawing attention to a table of books for sale. Photograph by Karen Lile.

6. Spike

Left Bank Books in St. Louis is home to Spike. Spike has his own page at the store's website, with an interview and some of his literary recommendations.

7. Hawaiian Bookstore Cats

Ed and Cat - Talk Story Bookstore

Talk Story Bookstore in Hanapepe, Hawaii is the sole bookstore on the island of Kauai and the westernmost bookstore in the United States. Owners Ed and Cynthia Justus are credited with revitalizing the small town of Hanapepe, and have a restoration project going for other downtown buildings. Talk Story Bookstore has three cats, whose names are not recorded online. Here you see owner Ed Justus with one of the cats. Photograph by Flickr user brewbooks.

8. AlleyCat

The American Book Center in Amsterdam has an auxiliary clubhouse nearby call the ABC Treehouse. AlleyCat lives there, and has her own Facebook page, where her activities and interests are both listed as "eating." Photograph by Harald Seiwert.

9. Dante Kot

Then there is Dante, who is quite the celebrity in Poland. Dante lives at a secondhand bookstore in Wroclaw. My Polish is rusty, and Babelfish translates "secondhand books" into "scientific antiques," so I haven't found much about the bookstore itself, but Dante has his own blog, and his own Facebook page, where he interacts with fans and other internet cats -in Polish.

10. Heterochromatic Cat

Love Her -Eyes- 4 of 4 -Bangalore-najeebkhan@hotmail.com

There's not much information available, but I couldn't resist this picture of a colorful white cat who lives in a bookstore in Bangalore, India. Her name is not recorded, but aren't those eyes something else? Photograph by Flickr user najeebkhan2009.

This list was inspired by a post at Metafilter which linked all five previous mental_floss Bookstore Cat posts, and where I found comments leading me to several of today's entries.

If your favorite bookstore cat isn't listed here, it may be found in one of the previous posts, 12 Bookstore Cats, 8 Bookstore Cats, Our Readers’ Favorite Bookstore Cats (Volume One), Our Readers’ Favorite Bookstore Cats (Volume Two), or Our Readers’ Favorite Bookstore Cats (Volume Three).

See also: 8 Library Cats


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