Legacy of the Cat is probably the best book on the planet about the cat breeds. How can I make such a confident statement? Firstly it is visually stunning. It has been illustrated by Tetsu Yamazaki, a Japanese cat photographer living in Japan. He signs his photographs “Tetsu” in gold ink. For me he is the next best cat photographer in the world after Helmi Flick. Helmi’s work illustrates this website.
The book uses Tetsu’s photographs heavily and so it should. The photographs are, of course, right out of the top draw. There is no better way to describe the cat breeds than through fine photography. All the cats are photographed against a white background with quite a soft and simple lighting. This is elegant photography and well suited to book publication as the text can be wrapped around the photographs.
The text is written by Gloria Stephens. Gloria simply knows her stuff based on long experience in the cat fancy as a judge, administrator and instructor. Gloria Stephens also knows cat genetics. This is where the layout and design comes into its own. Genetics are very complicated but through excellent design and illustration they become understandable – just!
It is quite a compact book, about A4 size in UK paper size terms. I use the book as a main reference work in addition to other books that I will be reviewing later. I highly recommend Legacy of the Cat. Note: the title on the book is in lower case, hence the title to this review is also in lower case.
The ISBN number is ISBN 0-8118-2910-3