What was one of the first novels ever published? It could be an obscure book called “Beware the Cat”, which is about talking cats and an alchemist that dates back to the 16th century.
In William Baldwin’s story, the cats are good, bad and dastardly, but mostly heroic and more morally upstanding than humans. Alongside them is a Catholic priest dabbling in alchemy. After drinking a potion, he learns to understands the cats caterwauling on his central London rooftop and a wacky plot follows, including a testimony from a ravished female cat who is seeking justice in a nocturnal cat court.