I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own.
A woman and her cat travel through Japan, each giving their own accounts of how each day’s events play out, in this fun travel fiction read, “Whisker’s Abroad: Ashi and Audrey’s Adventures in Japan”, written by Carrie Carter.
Whiskers Abroad is a lively travelogue featuring a trip to Japan shared by two main characters, Audrey and her cat Ashi, who alternate recounting their versions of events. During a twelve-day trip, the pair visit several cities. Adventures abound. Audrey is still trying to find her place in the universe, while Ashi believes Audrey would sink beneath the waves were he not present to rescue her. Audrey’s daily horoscope offers tantalizing clues as to what’s in store for the pair. Written by Carrie Carter and designed by Stacy Vickers, Whiskers Abroad is both an amusing travel story with unforgettable characters and a useful guide for tourists going to Japan. Lavishly designed, Whiskers Abroad will delight both your eyes and your sense of adventure.
This was a fun, unique, and engaging story from the start. The author immediately distinguishes her story with the book’s unique format, with double pages that splash the almost diary-like passages of the main character’s inner dialogue and experiences. The beautiful artwork from illustrator Stacey Vickers showcases a depth of connection and relatability to the novel, as passages and pages range from daily horoscopes and personal anecdotes to experiences from the point of view of the Ashi, whose cynicism and realist nature is a perfect balance to Audrey’s sense of adventure and exploratory nature.
Yet what was so fascinating to me was the way in which the author balanced the fictional side of this narrative with the more travel-based story forming on the pages. It felt as if the story could easily become a travel guide for those interested in Japan. The serenity, beauty, and tourism that the nation of Japan has to offer are perfectly paired with the culture and imagery that the book brings to life on the page.
Heartfelt, imaginative, and entertaining, author Carrie Carter’s “Whisker’s Abroad: Ashi and Audrey’s Adventures in Japan” is a must-read travel and adventure fiction novel. The humor, the knowledge, and the imagery used to bring this story to life were both engaging and heartfelt in their delivery. If you haven’t yet, preorder your copy of this beautiful novel today or pick up your own copy on October 6th, 2022!
About the Author
Carrie Carter always wanted to be a writer. She started churning out short stories in the third grade. They all went like this: the main character, a young smart girl, noticed a suspicious person sneaking around in the dark. She investigated and ended up getting whacked in the head with a blunt object, only to wake up days later in a new location to discover everything was a simple miscommunication. Fortunately, Carrie managed to graduate from those narratives of concussions to the much more enjoyable readings about a traveling cat. Her debut novel, Whiskers Abroad: Ashi and Audrey’s Adventures in Japan, is a combined guidebook with a travelogue and tales of cat adventures.
Before writing and creating the book with her sister, Stacy Vickers, she moaned to all her friends about her lack of Ikigai (life’s purpose). She created a list of her personal likes and forced her friends to read it. They were supposed to be inspired and suggest the perfect career for her.
The list had all the usual suspects, drinking coffee, not to be confused with making or serving coffee, petting cats, dining in hoity-toity restaurants, eating in hole in the walls, reading about infectious diseases, figuring out the nutritional content of a meal, and so on. Her sister suggested combining several of the ideas to create Whiskers Abroad. Cats, new foods, travel, Japan, and writing united? Bingo.
At first, the book was going to be a spy novel with a cat as the main character, but Carrie knew nothing about espionage. She did know about traveling in Japan. She visited the country fourteen times with her husband, Jim. She once ran the Tokyo Marathon. The Whiskers Abroad concept solidified.
Carrie and Jim live in Houston with an adorable cat named Frenemy, who was unhappy at not being selected as the model for the book. They also play in the 80’s cover band she formed, Molly and the Ringwalds, which has been going strong for over twenty years. In addition to the keyboards, Carrie also plays the recorder and bagpipes.
When not making music or writing fiction, she loves to cook at home, design/create Halloween costumes and daydream about meeting Jacques Pepin. She dislikes overly dramatic music in reality TV shows. Currently, Carrie is working on her second book, a sequel to Whiskers Abroad, where Ashi and Audrey explore further into Japan and get themselves into even more interesting predicaments.
Carrie graduated from The University of Texas at Austin with a B.S. in Radio-Television-Film. She has several screenplays waiting for the right producer to come along.