I Stand Corrected is the story of two people whose lives coincide and look like they are going to get on well enough to develop a stable relationship, that is until the book’s heroine, Rosario discovers what her man, Javier is really like. When they get married, it all turns into a strange affair as Rosario is the heiress to an extensive fortune that could attract the wrong kind of man and incidentally does. Javier appears to be a good man, but that is until someone else is brought into their home. While Rosario might have a fortune and everything a woman could need, she also has emotional and personal needs Javier doesn’t fulfil.
Balou, a British Short hair tomcat introduces the book, getting the idea right out of our heads about cats not being able to read or write books – this book serves as Balou’s life story as well as a telling of what he has seen as a pet in Rosario’s mansion. He starts by telling the story of his mother and how she raised him then the shock of being taken away with his brothers in a box when he was but a young cat and sold to a pet shop. He thinks he will be picked sooner or later by a happy human and be taken to a house where he will be right at home, but this never comes as he hears the shop owner mention he is too old and as he is black, he might never get a home. He believes this is true until Rosario comes to the shop and purchases him as a present from her new husband.
On the surface the story could have just been about a rich couple who have notoriety in the public eye, but behind the glamour scenes, Rosario is the subject of someone who can manipulate her life. Balou sees everything around him, however and he knows Javier isn’t the man for her. I liked the fact the story was told from Balou’s point of view, but also went into the lives of the other characters. The chapters start with the names of whoever was telling their story at the time gives the reader a good account of how the story develops over the course of the novel.
The focus of a troubled marriage being told by the pet feline is one way of us humans seeing how our pets really interact with us and what they really think of us as people. The author captures the specific moments of Rosario’s life and has the cat comforting her in his own way, while he sees what is happening and doesn’t like the way she is treat by Javier. For those who thought pets didn’t notice anything about their owners, this is for them and it will open their eyes. I could imagine that what Balou saw between the two of them was harrowing enough, but for a human to have to watch the events of her life unfold is bad for a cat who can’t do anything but watch. As this is Patricia’s first novel in English, the translation sounds, at least to me to be perfect as she gets the emotion of her cat character across to make him one in a million.