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Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite
The Bobcat is a work of literary fiction with intense adult themes, penned by author Katherine Forbes Riley. The action focuses on student Laurelie, who has suffered a sexual assault and retreats to the woods with only a child whom she babysits for company. Introverted and drawn into the world of her own artwork, Laurelie revels in her solitude as she tries to heal until she meets a hiker who is following an injured, pregnant bobcat in the woods. Their chance meeting sparks a connection, drawn to one another despite their own issues and wounds, but when tragedy strikes, everything must change and the peace is broken once again.
With the central character studying from home and spending a lot of time with her art, this highly literary work focuses deeply on internal monologue for the opening sections. Laurelie’s solitude is well described through her commitment to her artwork, sensing the world from a distance and using the images she creates as a barrier. Author Katherine Forbes Riley captures the student voice well, giving us a blend of fantasy and reality which is only expanded upon when Laurelie meets the hiker and the bobcat in their surreal friendship. The mysteries around them unfold slowly as their relationship builds, and though the central action is genuinely exciting once it gets going, the book is much more about the world around the pair as a whole. Overall, The Bobcat will please literary fans who enjoy stories of slow-burning human connection, deep psychological healing, and celebration of the natural world.