Hi there, we are James Bowen and Bob, soul-mates, former street dwellers and the subject of the book A Street Cat Named Bob - And How He Saved My Life. Here's a picture of us, just in case. We met back in 2007 when we were both at a low-point in our lives. James was a former homeless person and recovering drug addict and Bob was a stray cat, roaming the streets of London. James found Bob badly injured outside his apartment and spent the little money he had on medicine for his new feline friend. Bob refused to leave and was soon spending his days and nights working on the streets, first supporting James while he went busking (playing music for cash) and then helping him to sell the homeless magazine, The Big Issue. We were both lost souls really. Together we helped each other back from the brink. A Street Cat Named Bob is the international best-selling account of our adventures. So we're delighted to be here at Reddit where you are welcome to Ask Us Anything? James will be doing the talking, obviously. Bob's smart, but not that smart!

Here is our proof! http://i.imgur.com/QSvbpmO.jpg and https://www.facebook.com/events/161095544087334/

Disclaimer: I have someone typing out my responses but all of the answers will be 100% my words.

Comments: 309 • Responses: 40  • Date: 

bobite_kath22 karma

Hi James and Bob. Has Bob ever been so grumpy that you've had to cancel an interview or book signing? I know from your book that sometimes he preferred to stay at home rather go out busking because he was having a cat-equivalent duvet day ;-)

SullivanandPartners18 karma

No. He usually loves the attention, but he does get fed up sometimes just like everyone else, especially when people prod and poke him during book signings. That used to happen in the early days but I've made sure that it doesn't any more. He's always my No1 priority.

tomolamb13 karma

Hi James and Bob!! When Bob does a high five, does he hide his claws? Doesn't he scratch? Doesn't it hurt when Bob is on your shoulder?

SullivanandPartners15 karma

Interesting question. Yes he usually keeps his claws hidden, unless he wants to get my attention in which case he sometimes gives me a gentle poke. And no, it doesn't hurt when he's on my shoulders, in fact I feel a little bit unbalanced when he's not there!

Scaramantica11 karma

Hello James, hello Bob. <3 Do you both have a special mailing address for fan mail or so? If yes, where can I find it or can you tell me? Would love to write you a letter since your first book (still have to read the second one) touched me very deeply. Thanks in advance and all the best to you and Bob. You both rock! :)

SullivanandPartners13 karma

Yes, please send letters to James Bowen, c/o Hodder & Stoughton, 338 Euston Road, London, NW1 3BH, United Kingdom.

Timmysmum10 karma

Will fame and fortune change you as a person, or are the lovely experiences you face now actually make you more humble?

SullivanandPartners13 karma

I really hope I'm not changing. One thing I can say though is that I am amazingly humbled by what's happened to me in the last year or so. To be honest I still don't quite believe it has happened.

Timmysmum9 karma

If you could take Bob on a vacation anywhere in the world, where would it be and why?

SullivanandPartners15 karma

He loves watching wildlife programmes on tv, so I'd love to take him to the Galapagos Islands so that he could see the giant tortoises and all those amazing birds.

SullivanandPartners9 karma

Thanks so much for your brilliant comments and questions. Please keep them coming and we will keep monitoring and answering them in the days to come. Lots of love, James & Bob

elektrohexe9 karma

How are you today? :)

SullivanandPartners15 karma

I'm fine but Bob didn't feel so good this morning. We got a taxi to a TV studio in London and the driver thought he was Lewis Hamilton. He was going way too fast and Bob got a bit of car sickness. He perked up as soon as he got out of the car though and is feeling fine now so don't worry about him.

helenld8 karma

Hi James and Bob...i love your books, they are Brilliant..

I would like to ask if Bob ever watches himself when he is on Tv???

SullivanandPartners10 karma

All the time. Even when we're in live studios he watches himself on the playback monitors. I think he recognises himself.

lochnanc8 karma

I love the idea of "Around the World in 80 Bobs". (My covered bridge photo with Bob is on there! Plus I was thrilled when you posted the short video I made when your second book arrived!) Do you remember the very first Bob photo that was sent to you and where it was taken? If so, where was it taken? Thanks!

SullivanandPartners7 karma

The very first picture was taken at the top of a skyscraper in New York.

coxybaby7 karma

Hi J & Bob. Your books are an inspiration and one of my all time favorites. What are your favorite books?

SullivanandPartners14 karma

I love Orwell, Tolkien, Terry Pratchett, Burroughs and Frank Herbert. That kind of stuff.

JLPhiTau7 karma

Hi James!

What about Bob helped you from your addiction? Would you recommend pets (be they cats or other animals) to other people struggling with addiction?

Good luck with your continuing recovery!

SullivanandPartners5 karma

Pets like Bob are great and amazingly therapeutic, as I know from my own experience. They can ease the road to recovery. BUT an addict's first move has to be counselling by proper professionals.

Timmysmum7 karma

If a t-shirt was made to complement 'Real Men Love Cats' that said 'Real Women Love James and Bob' would you blush?

SullivanandPartners9 karma

Like a beetroot!

SullivanandPartners7 karma

Hi, we are going to be here for another 15 minutes or so. But we will continue to read and reply over the coming days.

JoanofCat6 karma

What do you think you'll be doing in like 10 years from now? You are an inspiration so I'm sure you'll still be an inspiration.

SullivanandPartners9 karma

Good question. Who knows? But I'm pretty sure that whatever I'm doing the future is going to be a million times brighter. I'm never going to back to the dark days of my past.

lindtoholic5 karma

Hey James! If Bob could talk, what do you think he would sound like? And what do you think his first words to you would be?

SullivanandPartners6 karma

Great question. I think he'd have a bit of a Cockney accent and the first thing he'd say would be "Oi, where's my dinner?"

Scaramantica5 karma

Think you you were on german morning tv lately and so I have another question: Are there other promotion dates or even book signings planned here in Germany?

SullivanandPartners7 karma

We would loooove to come to Germany, we have got so many great fans there and we would love to meet them. But there are no plans at the moment.

lizcrouch5 karma

Hi James and Bob - please can you say hi to all The Streetcats and Bobites : )

SullivanandPartners6 karma

Hi guys, how you doing?

wisegirltara4 karma

What makes Bob purr? I mean, specifically.

And do you still play music?

SullivanandPartners7 karma

At the moment, he loves nothing more than being combed because he's moulting from his winter coat. He just sits there purring away as happy as can be.

Yes, I do play, but just for my own pleasure. I love writing my own material at home.

Kitttykat734 karma

What do you think of us Bobites? Coz we love you both

SullivanandPartners3 karma

We love all the groups that have been brought together by their love of Bob and me.

Zenastagg20104 karma

Hi James, I love your book, I would like to ask you what Bob's Favourite treat is

SullivanandPartners9 karma

He really loves a slice of ham. If I say "Bob, hammy ham!" it doesn't matter where he is, he will come running to the kitchen in seconds.

laundryetc4 karma

Hi James, You mention the Dalai Lama in the acknowledgemnts for your first book. Your story seems a particularly Buddhist one to me as you could not have set out to make it happen, your life must have unfolded for you. Were you a follower of the Dalai Lama before you and Bob met?

SullivanandPartners4 karma

I'm not a follower of one particular religion but I've always believed that if you do something good then something good will come back to you. A lot of religions teach that, but the Dalai Lama speaks about it specifically when he talks about Karma.

Moiraine924 karma


SullivanandPartners14 karma

Bob and I aren't on the streets right now, which is a relief. It was never great being out in all weathers and being abused by people who didn't understand how hard it was for us. It wasn't our choice to be there. So now we're trying to give back to those who helped us by raising awareness and money for homeless and animal welfare charities. And yes, we are working on some more books.

Timmysmum3 karma

As you're a very understanding Person, and know what London life is for many people, do you think you would like to be Mayor of London? Personally I think you would be great at it :)

SullivanandPartners6 karma

I would be no good as Mayor, but Bob would be fantastic. He'd probably introduce a law that made tuna free for all London's cats.

thelast_timelord3 karma

Hello James! Your story is so heart warming and inspiring. What advice or words of wisdom do you and Bob have for other peoples and felines that may be down on their luck or going through a rough time right now?

SullivanandPartners6 karma

My simple message is not to give up and - in the words of Monty Python - always look on the bright side of life.

Bigassbird3 karma

Hi James and Bob

Your book detailing your journey and Bob's help is brilliant.

My questions are: What is your favourite Nirvana song? And what sort of music does Bob really like?

SullivanandPartners7 karma

Oooh, that's hard, there are so many. I'll say Hairspray Queen. Bob really likes me playing acoustic guitar, which might be down to the fact that he had to listen to so much of it during our years on the street :)

Moiraine923 karma


SullivanandPartners11 karma

I'm a pacifist and an animal lover - so I wouldn't fight either of them!

kbeck303 karma

Hi James

If you could only use three words to describe Bob, what would they be? (I'm about halfway through 'The World According to Bob' and it's great). My three female cats say hello!

Karen x

SullivanandPartners3 karma

Wise. Brave. Loyal.

Conor_2 karma


SullivanandPartners5 karma

No it's not Bob, but it does look like him.



SullivanandPartners3 karma

Nice one. We had to look it up! :( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jay_and_Silent_Bob

Bob isn't silent actually. He has a range of noises that get the message across. For instance, if he’s tired he will let me know by letting out a light, low-pitched grumble or moan cum growl. And if that doesn't do the trick, he just stands fixed to the spot, refusing to walk.

m-vasconcelos2 karma

Hi James and Bob <3 You're very strong. I'm your big fan! Do you both have a special mailing address for fan mail or so? If yes, where can I find it or can you tell me?

SullivanandPartners3 karma

see my earlier reply :)

aidanliam2 karma

Hi, Have you moved out of your flat yet? Love you both x

SullivanandPartners3 karma

Not yet, but I'm saving hard and really hope to be able to get Bob and I a nice new place very soon.

lochnanc2 karma

I want to plan a trip to the UK to visit family in the coming months. Will you and Bob be doing any more book signings because I will plan my trip around that! Thanks! Love both your books. We need more! :)

SullivanandPartners3 karma

Yes, we hope to do some more in October when we have our next book coming out. Keep an eye on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

Annakajima2 karma

Hi James and Bob! Have loved following your story and your book was so touching, it's wonderful to see such a great bond between you and how it's turned both your lives around, I used to walk past Angel Station everyday and the times you were both there made my morning (was only brave enough to say hello once but it was fab! Thank you!)

For my question (apologies if it's a repeat) but with all the talk of a movie in the pipe line who do you imagine portraying you (James) or is there a dream actor that you'd love to play your part!

Can't wait to read your next book, good luck to you both on your tour and book promo!

P.S: My cat Shinx says Meow, she may not have saved my life but she's wonderful and I'm totally a cat person

SullivanandPartners6 karma

It would simply be a dream if they made a movie at all. I've heard so many names from Russell Brand to Daniel Radcliffe. To be honest, I'd be honoured if anyone was willing to portray me.

MirrinSelmin2 karma

When do you celebrate Bob´s birthday? And how do you celebrate it?

SullivanandPartners5 karma

I tend to celebrate it in March in between my own birthday and that of my best friend Belle. Hers is two days after mine, so that means we have a three day celebration!!! That's also around the anniversary of when Bob and I first met, back in March 2007.

dundeefruitcake2 karma

Hi James, Do you think Bob is a friend from a previous life and that you are each other's Guardian Angels in this one? P.S. Love your story and your books. And, of course, your owner Bob!

SullivanandPartners5 karma

We are definitely each other's Guardian Angels in this life. Whether or not we met in a previous existence - who knows? It's just one of the many great mysteries about Bob.

Jonesy_girlAZ2 karma

This is so awesome! My cat John was a saving grace to me. His guilty pleasure is watching animal shows. He is my rock!

SullivanandPartners3 karma

Ah, snap. Bob loves watching animal shows too. And horse racing!

Zippy1212 karma

Favourite foods James, what is yours, and what is Bob's?

SullivanandPartners5 karma

As I said earlier, Bob loves ham. I love a nice Indian curry, but nothing beats a steak, sausages and burgers cooked on a BBQ.

eddycat992 karma

James, what is your favourite food? (Just about to make chicken curry!) x

SullivanandPartners2 karma

Save me some, I love it.

autumnsmum2 karma

Hi James have you still got your parking meter & push bike you brought lol. Xx

SullivanandPartners5 karma

Ha ha, no the old parking meter has gone, but the bike is still there, although it's gathering dust in a corner at the moment.

Stuckinabin1 karma

Hi James and Bob! When are you next on telly? :)

SullivanandPartners5 karma

We are going to be on QVC at 9am on September 23rd. We were on there a few weeks ago and really enjoyed it. :)