Books · Reviews

A CAT WILL PLAY by M. Duda – A Cat Will Play

Disclaimer: This book was sent to me by the author, M. Duda, for an honest review.

Genre: Short Story/Fiction/Fantasy/Horror/Paranormal


Three twisted tales explore the dark side of human nature
…and the possibilities of fantastic unexplored worlds.

  • Three new and different short stories
  • Experience psychological horror in the short story “CRDL”
  • A lost family member may be found in the afterlife, “Christmas Never Snows”
  • In “Cosmo’s Tale,” growing up is harder than it looks for a young Esther
  • A thread of dark irony weaves through each tale

Welcome to a shadowy world of imagination and depth–where the veil between worlds is much thinner than we ever thought possible and the biggest question is never what happens next, but why. In this dark and unexplored place, good intentions don’t always work out as planned, and the living and the dead each find themselves trapped in cages of their own making.

Containing three unique and imaginative tales, A Cat Will Play showcases the very best and worst of human nature through very different characters and situations. Experience the psychological horror of a postapocalyptic world in “CRDL,” a young girl’s search for excitement and answers in “Cosmo’s Tale,” and the haunting journey of an earthbound spirit in “Christmas Never Snows.”

At times playful, terrifying, and twisted, M. Duda’s second installment of the Shadow Books series evokes a broad range of settings and moods with an underlying thread of darkness that masterfully ties each story to the next. Fans of futuristic sci-fi, paranormal fantasy, and young adult literature will each find something to enjoy in A Cat Will Play–and find themselves anxiously awaiting Shadow Books to come.

Opinion: Okay my readers, I know you have heard this one a MILLION times but I must repeat it again: Don’t judge a book by its cover. This is NOT a children’s book, it is actually quite far from it. When M. Duda asked if I could review this book for him, I of course had to clarify what genre it fell into because the cover is pretty misleading. After reading the short stories that were contained in A Cat Will Play, I have to say that the cover is actually quite fitting for the underlining messages that are sealed inside this one of a kind book. This is something VERY different from what you have ever read, and it has a horrifically beautiful feeling that is captured in every word and detail.

A Cat Will Play contains three short stories, all of which showcase different aspects of human nature. The first shorts story, CRDL, gives the reader an insight into a post-apocalyptic world that is riddled with poverty, unclean air, and an abundance of dead bodies that are used to create cooking fuel for children. Christmas Never Snows is about a woman who has passed away, but remains in the house she grew up in as a child. With the inability to leave her home, due to the guilt of feeling responsible for her mother’s death, her father comes back to help assist her into the afterlife. In Cosmo’s Tale, a young girl struggles with finding a crowd to fit into while also trying to find answers to why things are the way they are in the world.

These three short stories are amazing! The style of writing that M. Duda uses in his writing is highly descriptive and detailed. The imagery brings the writer right into each story and leaves you feeling a bit strange about the world. I personally loved the last short story, Cosmo’s tale, which centered on a fourteen-year-old girl who is longing to find adventure but looks in the wrong places. It captures adolescence perfectly in the way that each awkward character is portrayed, as well as showing that each person has their own struggles that they are hiding. Not only does the main character come to realize that not everything is what it seems, but she starts to really appreciate what she has been dealt with in life. Christmas Never Snows explains to the reader about forgiveness and accepting mistakes that have been made. Basically, one can never truly rest until they accept the things that they cannot change.

Each short story in this book reveals a few small life lessons that everyone should be aware of, but the author delivers each lesson in an almost blatant yet cryptic way. I would highly recommend this book to any reader, no matter what genre you are most interested in. The writing is fantastic, and you will get sucked into the characters and situations as soon as you read the first page. I am so glad I read this book, and I cannot wait to go back and read book one.


8 thoughts on “A CAT WILL PLAY by M. Duda

  1. I couldn’t tell that the book sounded so interesting! That’s awesome! I’ll put it on my to-read list ❤

    (by the way, Mark said that we both chose the same day to catch up on his novel, haha! We are so connected ❤ Miss you, doll!)

    Liked by 1 person

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