by Andre Norton
I had this book on my TBR because it was mentioned on Clare Bell's blog and sparked my interest. So when I found it at a thrift store, of course I snatched it up. Breed to Come is a futuristic tale about a planet once inhabited by humans, who fled hundreds of years ago in the face of a terrible contagion. After humans abandoned the planet, the domestic animals they left behind- cats, dogs, rats and pigs- evolved into sentient beings with separate societies (the cat and dog tribes usually enemies but united in hatred of the rats). They remember the humans as a horror from the legendary past, calling them Demons. The story is told through the eyes of one of the cat-people, who at his coming of age leaves home on an adventure to the long-abandoned human buildings, where it is rumored that some of his kind have begun unearthing secret knowledge the Demons held. Among the mysteries and wonders the feline companions find there, where they battle with the rats for access to knowledge databases and technology, is the suggestion of a universal threat- that someday soon the Demons might return...
This was a fun read. I did wish the characters were developed a bit more, and the ending felt kind of rushed, but it's a very imaginative sci-fi story with some vividly feline characters. Done with the book, I read up a bit more about it. I had always assumed when I heard the name that Norton was a man, but I was wrong. She wrote scads of books- many featuring cats or cat-like creatures. I'll definitely be on the lookout for more of her books!
Rating: 3/5 ........ 285 pages, 1972
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