Stephen Memorial Award – Runners Up
This competition was genuinely hard to judge, and none of these cats should be considered in any way inferior. This page is done in alphabetical order of the only thing that matters: the cat!
From Sir Kipling, witch’s cat and master deadpan snarker, or Khana, the airship’s cat, to Gatsby and Yoshi detectives extraordinaire, whether they talk, purr or simply keep their humans under paw, all these cats were distinctive enough to make a mark. Here are our ten Runners Up for 2017.
Story: Homunculus and the Cat
A winged cat with a literal nine lives, who is curious, enjoys sleeping and who can talk when she feels like it. She spends her time helping out against Japanese Mobsters, death cults and, more often than not, letting everyone else run around while it is boring. Of course, if something does become of interest, she will quite happily spend her time getting into trouble.
When a calico stray decides it’s going to introduce itself into the author’s life, it demonstrates that cats are very good at getting what they want. Setting up residence while the author is suffering with flu, Bouhaki winds up saving the life it has forced its way into.
Story: The Clockwork Menagerie
Ophelia the clockwork cat is a wondrous creation. Returned to the shop she was made in due to a defects like being able to throw up, which no mechanical cat should do, Ophelia’s creator is left with the problem of rehoming her. Mechanical or not, Ophelia is for all intents and purposes a cat with a sweet purr and the feline ability to twist people round her tiny mechanical claws…and possibly be the way her creator will finally find happiness.
Story: Dead Again
An albino cat with more expressions than a comic, Elvira knows exactly how to get her point across to her erstwhile owner, Emlyn Good. Being a witch’s cat hasn’t granted her any supernatural power other than the ability to say with a look and a meow exactly what she thinks of the people around her – not to mention getting caught up in all sorts of magic!
Story: The Petectives II: Stalking Horse
Gatsby is the active part of the feline detective duo: Sam Spade to Yoshi’s Mycroft Holmes. Yoshi’s partner in claws, Gatsby is cool and sophisticated (at least, he thinks so). He spends more of his time doing the legwork and getting into scrapes but still knows how to handle himself in a fight or mystery, just not when the vet is involved…
Story: The Counterfeiter Catching Cat
Hamish is a large Maine Coon cat who can sniff out trouble, (and counterfeit bills) and who rules the roost at the Cozy Cat Cafe. Whether it is getting into places he doesn’t belong or being used as sniffer cat, camera cat, or investigation aid, Hamish makes his mark in the little town of Ashbrook, solving more problems than he causes. And he causes a few…
From the moment she is hauled aboard clinging to one of the tow lines, Khana quickly wins over the Captain and then the crew. As much a member of the crew as any other supporting crewman, the Captain spends a lot of time making sure she is happy on board. She even appears in the last closing paragraph of the book, leaving a definite impression on the reader.