Summer is coming to an end on the small Greek island. After enjoying the luxurious hospitality of a family on vacations young cat Chantal is back in the stray life. Unfortunately, the touristic village where she was born has turned into a ghost-town ahead of winter.
Convinced of her domesticated nature, Chantal sets on an odyssey across the island in search of a human to adopt her. Along come the rest of the cats left behind: Tonto, her brother/hopeless bodyguard, tomcat Khrushchev, elegant lady Lele, old castrato Pericles and non-stop-purring Purr-Purr.
Surviving through the wilderness will turn into a coming of age journey for Chantal. Thus when she finally meets the one, she will need to question her true nature once again.
NINE LIVES LEFT is an adaptation of the novel I wrote, published in Greece by Polaris Editions in 2014.
The story was born while on vacations on a Greek island. Two kittens had intruded the summer house where I was staying, enjoying full services from all guests. As summer came to an end, I wondered what happens to the stray cats of the Greek islands when the tourists are all gone. This question became fruitful premise.
The story is set on an archetypal Greek island: white houses on rocky mountains against the deep blue sea. The cats’ odyssey presents to the audience the little known winter face of these islands. A face equally picturesque though way more dramatic.
Chantal’s quest for a foster parent bears an identity crisis that unfolds along the way: How many sacrifices are worth making in order to survive? Can one turn wild through rational decision-making? In other words, am I wild or am I not? That is the question.
NINE LIVES LEFT is a road-movie along our dormant wild side. Alike humans, cats are able to lead fully domesticated lives without ever letting go of their survival skills. Skills that are silently waiting to take back control whenever the circumstances call for it.
*the cover illustration is by the amazing Japanesse artist Toshiyuki Enoki