Whereas the “Careers” book spoofed the genre of Myers-Briggs career guides, Who Moved My Mouse? takes on an entire shelf-full of self-help books, one by one. Obviously, the joke here works best when one is familiar with the “source material” being re-imaged into a cat-centric universe (uh, as if there was another type), as I found the spoofs on the ones I had read being far more amusing that those on ones that I'd only heard of.
The book starts off with “A Cat's Conversations With God”, which I assume to be spun off of the (unread by me) Conversations With God books, then moves into what appears to be a generic “Purrsonality Profile” (I couldn't identify a specific book this was imitating), and then into “How To Win Friends And Influence Dog People”, no doubt following the non-Dog version by Dale Carnegie. Next it moves to the title chapter, “Who Moved My Mouse?: An Amazing Path to Declare Revenge on Those Who Dare Disturb What Is Yours”, obviously paralleling Who Moved My Cheese?: An Amazing Way to Deal with Change in Your Work and in Your Life, and then to “Don't Sweat the Small Stuff … But Feel Free to Freak Out Over Anything That Moves Suddenly or Without Warning” which echoes Don't Sweat the Small Stuff--and it's all small stuff, and on to “Nice Cats Don't Get the Corner Litter Box” which certainly owes a good deal to Nice Girls Don't Get the Corner Office. Stephen R. Covey's The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People transforms into “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Cats”, Don Miguel Ruiz' The Four Agreements become “The Fur Agreements” (and, interestingly, this is the only source book specifically credited with inspiration for a chapter here), and The Worst-Case Scenario Survival Handbook (which appears to deal with things like escaping from quicksand or performing a do-it-yourself tracheotomy) becomes “A Cat's Worst-Case Scenario Survival Handbook”, with pointers on avoiding baths and vacuum cleaners. A “bonus chapter” on The Secret closes things out, but this is a mere 2 sentences long.
At one point a Chicago comedy troupe had an unofficial slogan: “the drunker you are, the funnier we are”, and I'm reminded of that when thinking about this book … the more familiar the reader is with the “source material” the funnier the Cat-version takes on it will be. While this would be an amusing “kitty humor” book to somebody who had never wandered down the “business strategy” or “self-help” aisle of their local bookstore, it could well be a “gut-buster” for those who were both well versed in these genres, and can-opening adjuncts of the feline species. I, myself, am in the middle here, cohabiting with cats and having dabbled in the books in question, and I'm sure I found this far more amusing than some would, but far less so than others.
In any case, Who Moved My Mouse? is a short, easy read, with a predictable (if variable) humor pay-off, so should be something that anybody would enjoy. This only officially came out last week, so it is very likely to be available at your local brick-and-mortar book monger, but both Amazon and BN.com have it on discount for under $10. This would be appreciated in general by “cat people”, but is likely to most amusing to folks who are big into the books spoofed in it!