First & foremost, I have to say how completely moved I feel to share this book with my readers. This is not only a book review but also an in depth interview with the author who works under the alias Rebel Kitty. The Revolutionary Dog Walker is full of random stories from Kitty’s experience as a brown woman owning her own dog walking business. All of the stories, as random as they are, have a theme that lasts throughout: racism, privilege, moral, and the privilege based morality.
As a brown woman myself I can relate heavily to her personal experiences. Although they’re not identical it especially drew attention to how people of color are inherently taught to behave towards racism. How we are more comfortable withdrawing and belittling our thoughts or feelings to avoid calling out racism. I should add that this is a reaction of the oppressed — not necessarily a choice but more of a survival tactic.
There are so many different facets of racism that aren’t talked about publicly and that’s why I really appreciate this book. It’s strong in its conviction and forces you away from a third person perspective. It compels the reader to hear Kitty, visualize her actions, and, quite honestly, become her friend. This is great since most inherent thoughts are difficult to realize and it’s usually when a friend highlights them that we see the distorted thoughts a bit differently. Rebel Kitty does a great job of capturing that in the most subtle of ways.
I had the pleasure of asking Rebel Kitty some questions about her inspiration, book, and overall craft. Being in her presence is motivating so please read below to learn more about who Rebel Kitty is…
Alyssa: In your own words, what is The Revolutionary Dog Walker about?
Rebel Kitty: The Revolutionary Dog Walker is a collection of short stories based on my life as a woke Latina Dog Walker in the Upper East Side. I created 24 short stories because I was 24 when the book was released. Each chapter addresses the different -ism’s that plague Amerikkka… Racism, Sexism, Classism, etc.
Alyssa: What is the ultimate goal of your book?
Rebel Kitty: The goal of my book is to exploit the Upper East Side, to show the world that the slave slave master dynamics are still very much intact and how in this day and age we are still living in racism, it’s just sugar coated. I also hope to wake up my own people through this book: to give the information they might not have been exposed to prior to my book. I want to be a voice for my generation.
Alyssa: What sparked your inspiration to write it?
Rebel Kitty: The slaughter of Freddie Gray inspired me. I was always a social media activist but it didn’t feel like I was doing enough. I couldn’t be the help anymore, my soul wouldn’t allow it. I have no skills or education. I’m a college drop out. So I decided to give up my business and write about my experiences with hopes of getting a million dollar book deal in the near future.
Alyssa: What do you think makes your narrative different?
Rebel Kitty: To be blunt ain’t nobody talking about dog walking. No one knows about this world. Also, the simple fact I’m a light skin Latina, where everything about me screams privilege is a big deal, because there isn’t a lot of us out here willing to fight for black & brown lives.
Alyssa: Was it a difficult or long process?
Rebel Kitty: Honestly no, lol. The most difficult part was actually editing. I told myself one year I will be done with the book and have it out for sale and I did just that. To be honest I didn’t come to play games with you hoes. When I have a mission I just do it. Black and brown people die every day at the hands of pigs so my book didn’t have the luxury of time. The only difficult part is knowing the type of content I’m pushing puts my life in danger. I can legit one day be doing a live book reading exposing the racism and corruption of this country n be gunned down at the podium just like Malcolm X. But it doesn’t matter if you aren’t willing to die for freedom that word shouldn’t be in your vocabulary. Welcome, welcome Kitty X is in the buildinnnn’!
Alyssa: Did you learn anything about yourself or the world on this journey?
Rebel Kitty: Yeah, people can legit read an entire book with the knowledge to wake up and will choose to stay asleep because it’s comfortable. I learned people live in fear and thrive in it. I also learned our generation legit has no idea what the word community even means. If Huey Newton and Bobby Seale tried to organize the Black Panther Party now it would of failed. People don’t want to pool resources, people wanna get paid. We live in a crab in barrel mentality and as long as we continue to live this way we will never make it to financial freedom. What is sacrifice to You? I have also learned the people who will ride for you will and they will love you and come together for you but only if they have broken the chains of mental slavery.
Alyssa: Can we expect to see more written work from you?
Rebel Kitty: Yes. By the end of 2018 I will have 4 books put out. The Gemini and The Taurus, a picture book about bisexuality, monsters, and freedom. Rebel Kitty The Ratchet Revolutionary (The Rebel, The Rebel of the Underground), my autobiography. Already out is The Revolutionary Dog Walker and lastly Kitty’s Energy, a complete guide inside the mind of Rebel Kitty. Kitty’s Energy will come with a bar code where people will have access to 10 original mixes and 10 music videos alongside pictures to every visual artist whom I feel captivates my energy.
Alyssa: What other mediums do you use to express yourself?
Rebel Kitty: Lmao. SOOOO…
I make mixes.
I choreograph productions.
Visual artist… I paint
And most importantly activism.
Alyssa: Is there anything you’d like to share with those reading this?
Rebel Kitty: Don’t Under Estimate Me. I’m Buying Back The Bronx If It Kills Me.
Just like that! To keep up with Rebel Kitty and her amazing, unique skill collective visit her site The Rebel of the Underground and direct message her on Instagram to purchase a copy of her book below: