Coffees And Kitties And Books, Oh My!

A Halifax-region used book shop lets clients play with and adopt rescued kittens.


Photo credit: Otis & Clementine’s Books and Coffee Facebook.

In Upper Tantallon, Nova Scotia there is a one-stop shop for all the world’s most finest things. Coffee. Books. Community.

And, most importantly, cats.

At Otis & Clementine’s Books And Coffee visitors can find more than just thrifty literature and locally-roasted, organic caffeine beverages.

There is also a wide variety of writing groups and book clubs for all ages, Spanish lessons, monthly open mic nights and other special events.

However, one of the shop’s biggest draws was added to the mix just last spring when the owner partnered with a local animal rescue group, South Paw Conservation Nova Scotia, to foster cats and kittens.

Shop owner Ellen Helmke had first opened the independent café slash bookshop in 2011, after spending half her life in Chicago and the other half in Nova Scotia.

While she has offered more clubs, workshops and diverse activities at the shop over the years, it was only in May 2019 that she decided to branch out to fostering kittens.

But Helmke plans to make this a permanent aspect of the shop.

Photo credit: Otis & Clementine’s Books and Coffee Facebook.

Now, guests can come in and play with a handful of kitties. And if they happen to make a new friend, the furry felines are available for adoption.

Each adoption is handled through the SPCA. Applicants just fill out an online application form and will have to pay a standard adoption fee.

If you’re in the Halifax region and want to combine caffeine, books and kittens, Otis & Clementine is just what you need.

Just keep in mind that Helmke asks that customers primarily interested in seeing the cats check with the shop first to be sure they have kittens at that particular time.

“Because the objective is to get the kittens adopted, obviously there will be times when one batch has been adopted and we haven’t received our next batch,” Helmke wrote recently on the Otis and Clementine Facebook page.

The Otis & Clementine kitties can get scooped up fast for their ‘furever homes’ – sometimes within just a week – so don’t hesitate!