Max and the Cats: A Novel
Max Schmidt grew up in the stockroom of his father's fur store, cloaked among the foxes, minks, and leopards, hiding from the glaring eyes of a stuffed tiger atop the wardrobe. It is here he dreams of traveling to distant lands; and here, as a young man, he begins an affair with the store's married clerk.
Forced to flee when his lover's husband discovers the affair and denounces Max to the Nazi secret police, Max steals away to Hamburg, where he takes passage on a freighter destined for disaster. When the ship founders somewhere off the coast of South America, Max is trapped in a dinghy with a hungry jaguar. Max believes his days are numbered-until he washes ashore on the coast of tiny Porto Alegre, Brazil, prepared to begin anew in the tropical clime.
But when Max discovers his next-door neighbor is a Nazi hiding from persecution, he finds that for the first time in his life, he is the master of his own destiny, ready to take matters into his own hands...
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already amid animal barely beast Bengal tiger Berlin binoculars boat Brazil Brazilian Captain Caxias Cerro Verde coat cracker cumin daughter day Max devoured dinghy door drove everything eyes face fact father fear feeling feline felt finally fish following day Frida Georges Backhaus Germany girl growled gunwale Harald hesitated Hilde huge husband Injun Jaci jaguar Kleine Peter Kunz landlady later laugh listen living matter Max asked Max began Max knew Max looked Max sat Max thought Max tried Max's meowing mother Nazi Nazism never newspaper night oilcloth opened Panthera parents picked Porto Alegre Professor reply Rudolf Schmidt scream sea gull servant shark ship shipwreck shouted Signor Ettore sleep smile someone soon squealing staring started stockroom stopped suddenly Super Ego swastika talk tears thing took truck turned watching What's wife window woman young